27th September 1996 at 01:00
The United Kingdom is in danger of creating an "electronic ghetto" if the Government does not view the promotion of the use of IT in schools as a priority, says a report by the House of Lords' Select Committee on Science and Technology.

Information Society: Agenda for Action in the UK, the result of a five-month inquiry, which also looked at raising standards in teaching and learning with information technology, warns that the coming world of electronic communication presents yet another source of disadvantage between rich and poor. Among other things it urges the Government and the private sector to fund a target to connect all schools to the Internet.

It says the UK should develop and exploit the educational content of the Internet to provide computer-based learning materials which reflect UK rather than US culture and language. Other recommendations in the 40-point agenda include the setting up of an Information Society Task Force, suitably equipped classrooms in selected schools that will remain open "after hours" to allow homework to be done on site and special financial provision made available to support computer access in after-school clubs, since these are mostly used by poorer households.

Information Society: Agenda for Action in the UK is available on the Internet at hmsodocumentinforsoc.htm. e-mail: hol.sciencetech@parliament.ukback.

A free 199697 academic year wallplanner is offered to the first 100 new subscribers to Envision, the National Council for Educational Technology's magazine. Envision is available on subscription for Pounds 7.50 per year from the NCET, Milburn Hill Road, Science Park, Coventry CV4 7JJ quoting ref. P996. Tel. 01203 416669.

Bradford Technology is to launch five new CD-Roms for technology and science up to and above GCSE level. The first two, Understanding Electronic Circuits - designed to help students grasp the concepts of voltage and current, from building blocks up to more complex circuits - and Light and Sound are now available.

Both CD-Roms include interactive virtual laboratory experiments, worksheets and study guides. They should sell for Pounds 99 plus VAT. Details from BTL Publishing, The BIC, Angel Way, Bradford BD7 1BX.

Tel 01274 841320. Internet http.www. e-mail matth@btl

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