Feeds

Schools fail to renew ageing PCs

But pupil to computer ratio falls

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Schools and colleges have more computers but many face a growing problem in renewing their IT equipment, a new report reveals.

Around half of schools do not have a policy in place for replacing old or broken workstations, according to the first annual review of the government's strategy for technology in education in England.

The report by the British Educational Communications and Technology Agency (Becta), released on 3 May, concludes that those that do have a policy (32 per cent of primary and 44 percent of secondary) intend to replace 25 per cent of their stock within five years – two years after the accepted target three-year lifespan.

The ratio of pupils to computers has also continued to fall. In 2005 there was one computer for every 6.1 primary school pupils on average and one for every 3.7 secondary school pupils.

In further education colleges, the demand for computers by the growing number of students outstrips supply.

"As a result, there has been a worsening of student-computer ratios in FE colleges," says the report.

However, interactive whiteboards are now prevalent in schools and colleges, with increasing numbers connected to computers with internet connection.

Mobile technologies are also set to play an "increasingly important role with personal ownership of mobile technologies such as laptops, PDAs and mobile phones on the rise in schools".

Despite significant improvements in internet bandwidth in schools, many teachers are unclear about the full range of benefits broadband can bring.

"In around a third of colleges, demand for internet access has continued to outpace college capability," says the report. "Unfortunately this represents a growing trend."

There is also still a "significant minority of pupils who do not have home internet access".

Although the market is providing increasing numbers of high quality products in the schools sector, provision is mixed.

"It is unlikely that demand will effectively drive improvements to quality, as purchases by schools continue to be concentrated on a relatively small number of suppliers. This is partly because practitioners are finding it difficult to develop effective strategies for identifying appropriate software," the report concludes.

This article was originally published at Kablenet.

Kablenet's GC weekly is a free email newsletter covering the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. To register click here.

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
Show us your Five-Eyes SECRETS says Privacy International
Refusal to disclose GCHQ canteen menus and prices triggers Euro Human Rights Court action
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.