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Last Updated: Monday, 10 January, 2005, 13:01 GMT
Schools spend more on technology
Teacher and pupil
The number of pupils per computer has fallen
The amount of money secondary schools in England spend on information technology has risen by more than a third in a year, official figures show.

The average expenditure last year was £88,200 - up from £65,000 in 2003, according to the Department for Education and Skills (DfES).

For primary schools, the amount rose from £13,600 to £18,500.

The figures for both sectors had fallen from 2002 to 2003. Some 2,430 schools completed the latest questionnaire.

Special schools

Expenditure per pupil was highest in special schools - £297 per pupil. It was £91 for secondaries and £69 for primaries.

The government has promised £900m for information and communication technology in schools in England by 2006.

The latest findings refer only to the year ending 31 March 2004.

The ICT in Schools Survey has been carried out since 1998.

During this time, the number of secondary pupils per computer has fallen from 8.7 to 4.9.

For primary schools it has gone from 17.6 to 7.5.

These figures beat Tony Blair's targets of an 8:1 ratio in primaries and 5:1 in secondaries by 2004.

A DfES spokesman said: "ICT is integral to the government¿s strategy for raising standards and has the potential to completely transform teaching and learning for all pupils and address better ways of working for teachers and support staff.

"This report confirms the progress made by all schools with ICT, in meeting the targets for the number of computers per pupil for 2004."

The findings come ahead of the big annual British Education and Training Technology (Bett) show being held at London's Olympia later this week.

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