Suppliers slam BBC e-learning plan

A wave of anger swept through the IT educational supply industry last week after the Government approved the BBC's plans to spend...

This Article Covers

Jobs

A wave of anger swept through the IT educational supply industry last week after the Government approved the BBC's plans to spend £150m to produce free e-learning materials for schools.

E-content providers fear a distortion of the educational software market, with smaller, innovative companies, often formed by ex-teachers with bright ideas, driven out of business.

The decision, by culture secretary Tessa Jowell, came at the same time that education and skills secretary Charles Clarke announced details of a £1bn cash injection for e-learning, online training, laptops and broadband in schools and colleges.

Speaking at the Bett educational IT exhibition last week, Clarke announced that schools and colleges will, over the next three years, be given £300m of e-learning credits, teachers will gain £195m towards new laptops, and £358m will go to give all schools broadband capability by 2006.

Phil Hemmings, director of corporate affairs at educational IT supplier Research Machines, said, "More money in the market is good, but we would rather have a proper market. Having a monolithic state-controlled supplier giving its products away for free distorts the market, and the ultimate losers are the people and the teachers."

BBC sources said the move would help spur the educational IT market.

Clarke supported the BBC's move. He said it will result in a balanced, dynamic market.

CW+

Features

Enjoy the benefits of CW+ membership, learn more and join.

Read more on IT jobs and recruitment

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

SearchCIO

SearchSecurity

SearchNetworking

SearchDataCenter

SearchDataManagement

Close