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DVLA calls on pupils to rise to the challenge

Primary school pupils across Wales are being challenged to win state of the art IT equipment for their schools by designing a computer game.

The DVLA Code Challenge is aimed at all primary school children aged 7-11 in Wales. Teams of up to 5 from schools and community-based code clubs are being invited to showcase their programming skills by designing a computer game from scratch. It can be based around one of 4 different themes set by the event’s sponsors.

The challenge will enable pupils to develop their problem solving, communication and teamwork skills. It will improve their knowledge of computer programming in a fun and innovative way.

It is being run in association with DVLA, Code Club, the STEM Ambassador hub Wales, Incredible Oceans, Brake, Road Safety Wales, the Fire & Rescue Service, the 4 Police Forces in Wales and the British Army Reservists. It is one of a number of volunteer initiatives run by DVLA to engage young people in technology.

Teams whose entries are shortlisted will then be invited to attend the DVLA Code Challenge 2017 prize day at DVLA’s digital theatre in Swansea on Tuesday 28 November. Lucy Owen (BBC News and X-Ray) will be hosting the event and the best entries will receive prizes of IT equipment up to the value of £3,000 for use in their school.

Every primary school, library code club or community centre code club group that registers an interest, attends the event or watches the event via the live web link will be included in a fantastic prize draw.

DVLA Head of Cyber Security Testing and STEM Ambassador Mark Jones said:

It’s important that as employers we actively support the development of IT skills in schools and communities, from grassroots early education upwards.

DVLA really is an Agency that is actively engaged in encouraging technologists of all ages. We provide opportunities for those with digital skills and talent to deliver our services now and in the future.

If you introduce computer science early, in a fun and interactive way, it really will pay dividends.

The closing date for entries is Friday 6 October 2017. Teams of up to 5 can register to take part in the competition and obtain more information at the competition website. This includes all prize information and full terms and conditions.

Note to editors

A number of organisations are sponsoring the challenge. The current list of sponsors can be found at dvlacodechallenge.dvla.gov.uk/sponsors. The closing date for sponsorship is Friday 1 September 2017. Any organisation wishing to sponsor the competition should email itsvc@dvla.gsi.gov.uk.

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