"Let me tell you the good news before we get to the problems," said my school's information and communications technology co-ordinator. (She is also deputy head, science co-ordinator, mentor to our newly-qualified teachers and full-time class teacher. Multi-tasking is the name of the game.) The good news is that after hours of work during the summer holidays, mixing and matching our ageing and ailing equipment, she has managed to assemble a working computer for each class. In theory, this provides for each child to have the required hour a week computer time, provided each machine is in constant use. The problems are lack of time and expertise.
For technical support and running repairs, we depend on voluntary help from a parent who is a computer professional. Three teachers attended a twilight-hours course last year. Two of them left this summer, leaving the deputy head as our resident "expert".
We are promised delivery shortly of state-of-the-art equipment as part of the Government's ICT initiative. With a little help from our friends, we may even be able to use it. In the meantime, we potter along the information superhighway on a second-hand moped. Me? I am the governor with special responsibility for ICT. Hang on while I get my roller-skates.