The BBC is seeking to place itself centre stage in any plans to provide Internet services for schools, with an ambitious programme of expansion that includes creating websites for almost all the BBC's schools television and radio programmes.
With the aim of producing "Europe's biggest website" by the end of next year, the BBC is attempting to become a major provider of on-line information, with education identified as a "crucial part of this explosion of activity". The BBC's staffing of its on-line services for education has now risen from four to 44 people.
Spurring on expansion has been the Government's announcement this autumn of the National Grid for Learning, an on-line network that will connect all schools and colleges within the next five years, and next year's planned digital education television channel. The Internet will be used to provide back-up materials for this channel's courses and training series.