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BCS closes fleeting teacher consultation on draft ICT curriculum

20 Nov 2012
Firms turn to school leavers

Teachers' opportunity to comment on the first draft of the reformed ICT curriculum that will be put to the Department for Education (DfE) has now closed.

The DfE had instructed the British Computing Society and the Royal Academy of Engineering (RAEng) to co-ordinate the drafting of the document. It worked alongside a small working party that included several school teachers, along with representatives from a number of education bodies, such as Vital and Naace.

At the end of October, the BCS asked for feedback from the wider education community.

Now the deadline for submitting this feedback has passed and the working group will spend some time incorporating teachers' comments into the draft document.

BCS could not immediately provide comment on the amount of feedback it has received.

At the end of November the document will be provided to the DfE. A full public consultation on the draft ICT curriculum is then planned for some time next year.

The two-page draft document currently outlines the general skills school children should be required to possess between the ages of five to 16 (Key Stages 1-4).

With four to six bullet points per Key Stage, the document outlines a mix of IT, computer science and digital literacy skills students need. However the document gives little specifics on how students should be taught such skills.

MAKE IT BETTER logoThe decision by the BCS to ask teachers for feedback on the draft document came following V3's launch of the Make IT Better campaign.

The campaign, in partnership with the Corporate IT Forum, calls on the government to give the ICT curriculum reform process greater transparency and to include the views of more teachers, education advisors and IT professionals from the start.

At the moment, only those in organisations that are affiliated with the working group were notified of their chance to comment on the draft document.

As part of the campaign, V3 is publishing regular accounts from teachers and IT professionals on what they want to see in the new ICT curriculum.

Many teaching professionals are frustrated their views will not be considered until the national consultation in Spring next year, even though a draft for the new ICT curriculum is already well underway.

The worry is that changes to the draft during this late stage of consultation are likely to be limited with only tweaks occurring at most.

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Rosalie Marshall

Rosalie Marshall is the special projects editor and chief reporter at V3. Previously she was a reporter for IT Week and channel editor for online television site Rosalie covers government IT, business applications, IT skills, open source technology and social networks.

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