Intellect wants current ICT curriculum scrapped

The trade body for the UK's technology sector, Intellect, has suggested the current ICT curriculum should be scrapped as it believes it is not providing sufficiently relevant training.Intellect said that the current ICT curriculum is "failing both pupils and employers" and suggested to the Department for Education (DfE) that computing should be a stand-alone subject available to pupils from Key Stage 3, with a focus on higher value computer science skills.

The trade body for the UK's technology sector, Intellect, has suggested the current ICT curriculum should be scrapped as it believes it is not providing sufficiently relevant training.

Intellect said that the current ICT curriculum is "failing both pupils and employers" and suggested to the Department for Education (DfE) that computing should be a stand-alone subject available to pupils from Key Stage 3, with a focus on higher value computer science skills.

It also recommended making computing a part of the English Baccalaureate in its response to the DfE's review of the national curriculum.

"Our member companies tell us that they often have to spend considerable time up-skilling employees as a result of the current ICT teaching," John Hoggard, Intellect's education programme manager said in a statement on Tuesday.

The current system is too focused on teaching students how to use specific software packages and fails to allow for development of more advanced computer skills, Hoggard added.

In a bid to encourage wider ICT skills and greater creativity, Intellect also suggested that basic ICT skills, interactive content and multimedia technology should be used across all lessons.

A Westminster eForum in March said that a dearth in qualified teachers is contributing to the shortfall between IT industry demand for qualified staff and the number of people taking computing or ICT courses.

"Take up of ICT courses is falling - for example, GCSE courses in ICT show a 57 per cent decline in numbers between 2005 and 2010," Hoggard said on Tuesday. "And the basic ICT skills being generated by the education system are not meeting the needs of pupils or their potential employers."

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