22 July 2016
Ireland's Digital Champion, David Puttnam, has warmly welcomed the far-sighted request by Minister Bruton to the Government's curriculum advisers, the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, to consider ways of integrating coding into the primary curriculum. He notes that under the Programme for Partnership, Government has committed to modernise the education system and evolve the curriculum to focus on the future needs, abilities and capacity of students.
"I believe that children and young people are our single most precious asset. We need to become significantly more imaginative in the way we educate them. We must actively embrace digital technologies in learning at every level and equip young people with the key enabling skills for the future; those same skills that will enable them to fulfil their full potential in a digital world".
He added: "Coding is an international language and is increasingly becoming part and parcel of children's lives. The ability to code and the ability to understand it will make them that much more employable in the future."
David Puttnam is a strong advocate of the Government's efforts to enhance the use of technology in teaching, learning and assessment, and to create an environment that supports good educational outcomes. He looks forward to the successful implementation of the Digital Strategy for Schools, and acknowledges Minister for Communications Denis Naughten's achievements under the education strand of the National Digital Strategy. In particular, he highlighted the School Digital Champion Programme which has been developed by his Department in collaboration with the Department of Education and Skills, and builds on the successful rollout of 100Mbps broadband connectivity to every second level school in Ireland.
The School Digital Champion Programme provides a platform for students to collaborate and use digital technologies to create solutions to real world challenges. In Puttnam's view, "this is an exciting and innovative programme which enables students to develop their creativity, critical-thinking and communications skills. It promotes hands-on learning and allows students to make a real difference to their school, local business and wider community through the use of technology".
Note to Editors:
More information about the Programme is available on our School Digital Champion page.
To find out more about the role of Digital Champion, and to contact David Puttnam, please visit this page.
The ultimate goal of Ireland's National Digital Strategy is the optimal economic and social use of the internet by business, individuals and by Government. Links to projects, video case-studies, and much more, are available on National Digital Strategy page.