Renewed KPN Klasgenoot now even better suited for secondary school students
The innovative ICT solution KPN Klasgenoot has been revamped and is now a lot more suitable for secondary school pupils. The Klasgenoot enables children who cannot easily go to school in person because of serious or chronic illness to attend classes digitally. More than a thousand children in the Netherlands are unable – most of the time – to go to school because of their health condition. With the Klasgenoot they can continue attending classes. Whether at home or in hospital, they use a laptop that is connected via 4G to an IT device in the classroom: the “KPN Klasgenoot”. So they stay in contact with their classmates and they do not have to miss school. For sick schoolchildren that is of huge importance. They feel connected with their classmates and do not fall too far behind with their schoolwork.
The revamped Klasgenoot weighs just 2.2 kilograms instead of 8.5 and has a built-in battery. It is therefore easier to take from one classroom to another. And even more importantly, to the canteen and other break rooms. That makes it extremely suitable for secondary school pupils.
16-year-old Ties is using the revamped Klasgenoot. He is a fifth grader in pre-university education (VWO) at the Were Di College in Valkenswaard. His immune system is weak, so he is frequently unable to go to school in person. With the Klasgenoot he can take classes from home and misses nothing. And even more importantly he is in contact with his classmates, now outside the classroom as well. “I have been using the Klasgenoot for many years and taking it from one classroom to another was always a tough task for my buddies,” says Ties. “So at break times the Klasgenoot always stayed in one place. Now my friends are able to take me easily to all classes and I’m with them during breaks too. I don’t miss anything and can be part of everything that is happening.”
Fifteen years of KlasseContact
KlasseContact, the project that enables children to make use of a Klasgenoot, is the first and longest-running project of the KPN Mooiste Contact Fonds. KlasseContact celebrates its 15th anniversary this year. From 2007 to 2013 the predecessors of the Klasgenoot – the Digibeter, the WebChair and the WebChair Portable – were in use. The Klasgenoot was developed in 2013 and 700 have since been produced and put into use free of charge. Since the start of KlasseContact more than 4,800 children have been able to take part and remain in contact with their classmates, despite the illness that keeps them at home or in hospital.
KPN Mooiste Contact Fonds
The KPN Mooiste Contact Fonds is an initiative of KPN and celebrates its 15th anniversary this year. The fund supports initiatives by various social partners aimed at stimulating social contact among vulnerable groups in society for whom this contact is something that cannot be taken for granted. The fund uses knowledge, ICT, resources and people (KPN volunteers) to change that.