ASP99: Bringing IT to the schoolroom

Analyst outlines how outsourced applications can make computer training affordable for schools.

Application service providers (ASPs) can provide effective outsourcing, particularly for schools, according to Gartner Group analyst Ben Pring.

Speaking at ASP99 Thursday, Pring claimed ASPs will play an increasing role in education. "Does a school need an IT department, or should they really be worrying about education? Why do they need to have IT skills? What they need is the functionality of application software," he said.

ASP iNet has been providing schools with IT solutions for the past seven months. The 200 pupils at Worplesdon primary school in Guildford, Surrey, can learn word processing, maths and graphics skills with 20 pupils working concurrently, thanks to a remote server and software applications provided and maintained by iNet.

iNet's Paul Webb believes ASPs will be the future for Prime Minister Tony Blair's vision of interconnected, networked schools. "We can offer IT more cheaply and efficiently. Small businesses can justify spending money on applications, but schools cannot afford it," he said.

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