Headlines: September 1st, 1999

A survey by the Department for Education and Employment has revealed a near four fold increase in primary schools in England with Internet connection. In April this year 66% of schools were connected compared to 17% at the same time in 1988. The number of secondary schools connected has risen from 83% to 93%. The target is for all schools to be connected by 2002.

There has been less progress with teachers becoming confident in the use of ICT. In primary schools this has only risen from 62% to 68% in the year and in secondary school from 61% to 66%. New teacher’s packages are being introduced to help in developing skills and to encourage teachers to make greater use of the technology.

From July this year schools, colleges and libraries have been able to buy high quality computer networks at competitive prices under a new deal brokered with suppliers. The deal provides for certified managed services with a one-stop shop from which computer networks can be bought at value for money prices and with built-in guarantees of quality.

Internet connection gives access to the National Grid for Learning which offers advice and learning resources. There is a Standards site giving teachers guidance and tools to improve effectiveness, raise standards and reduce the workload. A website for parents will be available later in the year. Link http://www.dfee.gov.uk