Businesses and schools need to collaborate to deliver computing curriculum

IT industry leaders discussed schemes including lessons for students in the workplace, and mentoring schemes for teachers and businesses

UK businesses and schools need greater collaboration to deliver the computing curriculum, say industry leaders.

Last week, MP Elizabeth Truss, parliamentary under-secretary of state for the department of education, discussed the role businesses have in supporting the computing curriculum – due to start in September 2014 – with BT, Tata Consultancy Services, Computing at School and MyKindaCrown.

Attendees debated several schemes, including lessons for students within workplace locations; mentoring schemes between businesses and teachers to make teachers aware of the practical workplace skills businesses look for, and work experience for teachers in IT-focused organisations.

Will Akerman, managing director of MyKindaCrowd, said: “Every industry is becoming more dependent on IT, computing and coding. The new computing curriculum is an exciting development in how we develop the skills of students, but it also marks a potential crisis.

“Teachers will start planning lessons in just 18 weeks, so now is the time for businesses to forge positive links with education to ensure they create the talent pipeline they need.”

Nupur Singh Mallick, director HR at Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) UK and Ireland, said: "The new Computing curriculum is vital if the UK is to close the widening skills gap.

“As a major employer, TCS fully support this call to action from MyKindaCrowd to help schools effectively deliver the new Curriculum, equipping them with the skills required to do well in the world of work.” 

Research from MyKindaCrowd recently found that teachers are unprepared for the 2014 computing curriculum. Over half of the teachers surveyed (54%) said they believe students know more about ICT then they do.

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