New term means digital skills on par with reading and maths in Welsh curriculum – Kirsty Williams
21 Sep 2016 01:21 PM
From this school term digital skills will increasingly become a part of every element of the curriculum in Wales, Education Secretary Kirsty Williams announced today (Weds 21st Sep).
Changes to the curriculum mean digital skills will now be used through all parts of a pupil’s schooling and not just isolated to specific ICT or computer science classes.
The Welsh Government’s Digital Competence Framework is now available to all schools and follows two independent reviews that recommended changes.
The new approach means more than just using computers and aims to equip pupils with the digital skills they need and can apply in the real world in the years to come.
The changes aim to put Wales in a world-leading position of integrating digital skills across the curriculum. The framework will develop and adapt to keep pace with digital developments.
Kirsty Williams said:
“This radical new approach is about embedding digital skills and knowledge in everything our pupils do as they progress through school. No longer will such issues be isolated in weekly computer classes; instead these vital skills will be applied across our curriculum. They’re now as crucial to our pupils’ development as learning to read and write.
“This is a key part of our move to create a curriculum fit for now and the future and not the late 20th century. Let me be clear, this is more than just using computers, the changes we are bringing in will equip our pupils with the digital skills to take-on real world challenges and use these skills throughout their life.
“Our teachers will increasingly be using digital skills into their lessons, alongside literacy and numeracy, as they are now fundamental to the modern world.
“This is the first element of the new Curriculum for Wales and we have listened to experts and business who said young people should be equipped with digital skills to succeed in the workplace and bring business the digital skills it needs.”
Dr Mark Bentall, Head of Automatic Flight and Comms Research at Airbus Group said:
“Making sure our children receive a thorough education and highly interactive experience in digital competencies is fundamentally important for industry.
“Digital technologies are so pervasive to the way industry works that we can no longer just be users; we need to make sure that our education system provides our future workforce with a baseline understanding of how the technologies work so that we deliver all of the benefits through a digital literate generation."
‘Digital pioneer’ schools across Wales have helped develop the Digital Competency Framework, which will be adapted and refined over time. The suite of resources and support materials are being developed as needs are identified and refreshed to ensure they remain relevant.