Teachers need to use more tech

Schools have invested more into their ICT systems this year than ever before, but teachers are slow to adopt the technologies in the classroom.

Teachers are hesitant to use new technologies, according to the Harnessing Technology Schools Survey conducted by the National Foundation for Educational Research on behalf of Becta.

Within schools, the pupil-computer ratio has risen to 4.3 secondary and 13.9 primary pupils per desktop within the last year. Learning platforms have also increased by 14 per cent. However, only 11 per cent are using the learning platforms for Web 2.0 activities such as blogging.

Three-fifths of teachers said that students enjoy lessons more when ICT is used, but an average of 30 per cent of students still do not have internet access at home, hindering the technology advancements that can be made in the classroom.

Stephen Crowne, chief executive of Becta, said: "A major concern raised by teachers was the fact that many pupils are still unable to access the internet when at home. We have taken steps to address this in an effort to bridge the digital divide' and close the gap between those who have and those who do not, bringing the full benefit of ICT to every child."

Another concern for schools is improving communication with parents. According to a previous survey, over two-thirds of parents want schools to communicate using text messaging or the internet.

"Technology can play a crucial role in creating a world class education system for learners," Crown said. "We are seeing some schools use technology to engage more regularly and more effectively with parents, but we need to see all schools take advantage of the opportunities technology can provide."

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