Reduced IT spending in schools would undermine pupils

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Reduced IT spending in schools would undermine pupils

Simon Quicke

The IT investment in schools needs to be maintained and increased if the next generation of school children are not to suffer.

That warning was given by those at the frontline of teaching and rolling out IT in schools in a survey carried out by NetGear at the BETT show.

By quizzing those at one of the largest educational IT shows of the year the networking specialist was able to tap into the mood of teachers at the very time when cuts in school IT budgets are expected.

The survey showed that half of the education professionals asked believed that not enough was being spent by schools, colleges and universities in IT and 9% believed that lack of spending would harm pupils' learning.

When money was spent last year it was predominantly in wireless, storage and infrastructure and this year remote access and investing in more up-to-date equipment are areas schools anticipate spending.

"Organisations are starting to realise that an efficient IT network is crucial in helping students learn and enabling teachers to meet curriculum requirements," said Mark power, managing director at NetGear UK and Ireland.

Power added his voice to the chorus of politicians and commentators warning against swift cuts to education budgets in an attempt to claw back government spending deficits.

"The economy impacts education establishments as it would any other organisation. This is why it is essential for all available IT budgets to be spent wisely," he said.

At the time of the BETT show PC builder Stone Group revealed that 82% of schools expected the IT budgets to slashed in real terms this year and 84% put budgetary constraints at the top of their list of concerns about 2010.
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