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Bett2000 Thursday, 13 January, 2000, 19:02 GMT
Online drive pushes ahead in schools
BETT Show
This year's BETT Show is still fascinated by developments online
The internet is still the technology which is capturing the attention of schools, says the head of the leading educational suppliers' organisation.

Looking at the trends at this year's BETT Show, claimed as the largest educational technology show in the world, Dominic Savage said that schools were looking for innovative and practical ways of using the internet in the classroom.

Mr Savage, chief executive of the British Educational Suppliers Association, said that this included a shift towards schools wanting faster, broadband connections to the internet.
BETT Show
Special trains have been chartered to bring teachers to Olympia
Driving this interest in online education were a number of government initiatives, including the training of teachers in using information technology, the setting up of the National Grid for Learning and schemes to encourage ownership of computers by teachers.

"There is clear evidence that teachers are responding to the extra funding and the direction of policy presented by the government," said Mr Savage.

Mr Savage also welcomed the government's emphasis on ensuring that there would be "social inclusion" in the development of educational technology, so that online access would not be limited to better off schools.

The higher expectations of young people were also leading to improvements in technology available in schools, said Mr Savage. Pupils who had modern computers and software at home would not be likely to accept out of date machines at school.

Bett2000
But the improvements in technology needed to be matched by more training, as a survey had revealed a widespread lack of confidence among teachers in using computers.

As well as the internet, Mr Savage said that this year had seen developments in whiteboard software and in the wider application of multimedia and digital technology.

There was also a growing level of interest in the BETT Show, he said, including the chartering of two trains to bring over 1,000 teachers from Birmingham to the technology exhibition in London.

See also:

02 Nov 99 | UK Education
22 Jul 99 | UK Education
22 Oct 99 | UK Education
28 Jul 99 | UK Education
20 Apr 99 | UK Education
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