Google enters UK schools market

Google, the internet search company, is entering the UK schools market - launching a website with resources and news for teachers.This is the internet giant's latest step into education - as it already has begun to offer online programs and e-mail support for online universities. The free online materials show how to adapt Google Maps and Google Earth for classroom use.
Google says it will support lessons in history, geography and citizenship. The search engine firm, which saw profits for the three months to the end of September hit $1.07bn (£523.4m), is diversifying into other areas of online services.
Online lessons
This now includes dipping its toe into customised services for teachers, with lesson plans and ideas for using Google's web-based applications. History topics include the slave trade, castles and the British Empire and geography topics include climate change and natural disasters - based around information integrated with Google's online maps.
Secondary school pupils in the UK have the highest proportion of computers in schools in the industrialised world, according to a recent survey. Jamie Buchanan-Dunlop, a humanities teacher at Crown Woods School in Greenwich, says using online services and search engines has become part of everyday life for pupils. But for any search engine, using it without guidance has the huge danger that pupils will believe that whatever they find on the internet must be true," he says. As such, schools want more customised search engines, which access pre-vetted sources of information, he says. And Google's advertising policy has already been changed this year to ban adverts for essay writing services. There had been concerns over plagiarism and the online sale of essays written for coursework and dissertations for GCSE, A-level and degrees.