School WiFi not fit for the 21st century

Pupils in England are at risk of missing out because their schools do not have good enough WiFi, recent figures have suggested.

Schools need fully accessible WiFi in order to fully embrace the digital learning encouraged by the government throughout a range of subjects, argues Valerie Thompson of the E-Learning Foundation. But only a quarter of schools achieve this according to the British Educational Suppliers Association (Besa).

The data comes from surveys of a representative panel of some 600 state schools across England, carried out by market research company C3 Education for Besa.

Of 250 secondary schools, about 22% said they had wi-fi in most or all classrooms, 39% had it in some classrooms, leaving 39% with wi-fi in only a few or no classrooms.

Of 350 primary schools about 28% had wi-fi in most or all classrooms, 22% had it in some classrooms, leaving half of all schools with wi-fi in only a few or no classrooms.

WiFi is ‘essential’

Valerie Thompson argues that good wireless networks are essential if schools are to use digital technology to its full potential within education.

She says that WiFi technology gives pupils the opportunity to learn throughout lessons, and outside of class time learning.
Government action

Steps have already been taken by the government to update the teaching of computing in schools, with the scrapping the old IT curriculum and including computer science as a core subject at secondary level.

Education Secretary Michael Gove has said he wants children to learn basic computer code in primary school and to be able to create basic animations and simple websites by the age of 11.

Many schools are already encouraging pupils to bring their own devices, including smartphones and tablets to school. Whilst others have decided to invested in devices for each pupil.

The future of WiFi in schools

Devices, whether they be ‘bring your own device’ (BYOD) or school funded are being widely used to download assignments, carry out research and email questions of teachers. Some pupils are even asking experts from outside school for assistance.

Most exam boards already use online technology to mark and transfer exam papers. In the future, it’s expected that the exams themselves will be taken online, and may even be marked in real-time.

 

Share this post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Privacy Preference Center

Performance

These are used to track user interaction and detect potential problems. These help us improve our services by providing analytical data on how users use this site. We don't track user IP address.

_ga, _gid, _gat

Optimazation

_biz_*, calltrk_landing, calltrk_referrer, calltrk_session_id, site_identity

Personalization

These are used to track user interaction and detect potential problems. These help us improve our services by providing analytical data on how users use this site. We don't track user IP address.

_ga_, _gid_, _gat_

LiveRamp

LiveRamp cookies allow advertisers to display on the websites you visit, relevant offers based on your consumption habits as well as measure the performance of their advertising campaigns. To work, this service is based on the deposit of a cookie on your browser when opening an email or when you visit to the site of one of Liveramp’s partners. These cookies only share your encrypted email address in an irreversible way thus allowing Liveramp to create a technical key associated with these cookies. By depositing these cookies some technical information can be automatically collected (such as your IP address, your operating system or your browser type). These cookies do not track your navigation. Liveramp do not store any information related to your connection. You can at any time easily oppose the deposit of these cookies by clicking: https://liveramp.uk/privacy or http://www.aboutads.info/choices

a