INFORMATION and communications technology is a key aspect of many projects in a pound;1.6 million partnership programme between independent and state schools. Almost 200 schools are involved in 56 projects, including:
* Sixth-form students from seven Coventry secondary schools will be trained to act as mentors in ICT and writing. The project has funding of pound;14,000.
* A joint centre of excellence in ICT to enhance the skills of staff and Year 7 students at St Albans School and St Peter's primary school. Staff and senior students from St Albans will act as mentors for St Peter's students and staff (pound;30,000).
* Video conferencing will be used to raise literacy for years 1 to 4 students at Hexham East First School and Mowden Hall Preparatory School (pound;7,000).
* King Edward's School and Rodborough secondary school in Surrey will work together to provide easy access to curriculum resources through a shared intranet in this pound;24,000 project.
* Blue Coat School and St Peter's Junior School in Birmingham will collaborate to improve the performance of students with special educational needs by using ICT. The pound;32,000 project will also improve communication skills and self-esteem.