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Written Statement - The ICT Steering Group’s report to the Welsh Government

Huw Lewis, Minister for Education and Skills

In January 2013, my predecessor established an independent steering group to explore and consider the future of computer science and ICT in schools in Wales. The membership of the group was comprised of representatives from a cross-section of key stakeholders and was chaired by Stuart Arthur, Box UK, Tom Crick, Cardiff Metropolitan University and Janet Hayward, Cadoxton Primary School. The group was tasked with delivering a report which set out their recommendations on a way forward and which considered, amongst others, the following themes:

  • ‘ICT’ in schools needs to be re-branded, re-engineered and made relevant to now and to the future.
  • Digital literacy is the start and not the end point – learners need to be taught to create as well as to consume.
  • Computer science should be introduced at primary school and developed over the course of the curriculum so that learners can progress into a career pathway in the sector.
  • Skills, such as creative problem-solving, should be reflected in the curriculum.
  • Revised qualifications need to be developed in partnership with schools, Higher Education and industry.

The report of the ICT Steering Group, published today, poses some very significant questions and explores themes that we must now consider in the context of the wider review of assessment and the National Curriculum. This, in turn, is set in the context of my priorities for Welsh education:

  • improving literacy
  • improving numeracy
  • reducing the impact of deprivation on educational outcomes.

I am very grateful for this report and will respond in full to all these recommendations in due course. In the meantime, I would like to express my gratitude to Stuart Arthur, Tom Crick and Janet Hayward, and the following Members of the steering group for all their work in producing the report and the recommendations:

  • Professor Khalid Al-Begain (University of Glamorgan)
  • Chris Britten (Ashgrove Special School, Vale of Glamorgan)
  • Lucy Bunce (Y Pant Comprehensive School, Rhondda Cynon Taff)
  • Gareth Edmondson (Ysgol Gyfun Gwyr, Swansea)
  • Mark Feeney (e-skills UK)
  • Charlie Godfrey (Fujitsu)
  • Ben Lidgey (Monitise)
  • Hannah Mathias (St David’s Catholic College, Cardiff)
  • Professor Faron Moller (Swansea University)
  • Simon Pridham (Casllwchwr Primary School, Swansea)
  • Maldwyn Pryse (Estyn)
  • Glyn Rogers (Ysgol Gyfun Gwynllyw, Pontypool)
  • Magi Gould (Bangor University)
  • Mark John (Vision Thing Communications Ltd)

The ICT Steering Group’s report to the Welsh Government (external link)