§ Mr. Nigel Jones
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what schemes she has established to promote access to the Internet in schools. 
§ Mr. Robin Squire
The Government published in November 1995 their statement of policy on the development of networked communications in education. "Superhighways for Education: The Way Forward", a copy of which is in the Library, identifies the national priorities and sets out the action to which the Government are committed. This includes support and encouragement for the piloting of new communications technologies in education, and ensuring that advice on the use of these technologies is made available through appropriate bodies. The paper announced an innovative programme of pilot projects, including several piloting the use of the Internet, which the Department is evaluating. The Department is also supporting two parallel projects. One will evaluate the benefit of educational Internet services; the other will assess the development of a virtual languages centre on the Internet. Advice and guidance for schools on networking and the use of the Internet is available from the National Council for Educational Technology.