I think the ICT educational world is holding its collective breath about the DFE’s handing of the ICT PoS to BCS.
The DfE seem to think that everyone apart from those who actually teach and inspire children are qualified to decide what it is we teach. A bit like the patient deciding which surgical procedure is best for their ailment. However this would suggest that ICT is ailing in primary schools but the truth is far from it. There is a huge body of knowledge and expertise in schools around the country which we are trying to tap into to create an ICT curricular entitlement which not only fulfils the requirement for a PoS but also inspires children and motivates teachers to go that extra mile in working with their children to make ICT an area of excellence in every school. Our children deserve that.
Our teachers know how best children learn and what switches them on. If we are to receive a curriculum to deliver then teaching will become mechanical, children will be bored, standards will fall and the great boom in ICT enabled children which Mr Gove wishes for will be lost.
Essentially an ICT curriculum without the input of professionals working in schools with the children and inspiring them and motivating them to learn is akin to teaching a painting lesson with just black and white paint. Primary education is about lighting a fire of learning which burns with children as they move through the compulsory phase of education. Only that way will they stay motivated and see a relevance.
We have experienced 20 years of prescription ever since the introduction of the original national curriculum and have delivered a politically driven curriculum which teachers have tried valiantly to make interesting. Mr Gove has said he wants to hear from teachers and the profession. It’s now in the hands of the British Computer Society to make recommendations about the new ICT entitlement. I am sure that they will consult with the profession and take on board the impact of work such as that carried out by Dave Mitchell at Heathfield in Bolton. Consigning Dave and his children to a life of code when standards have risen so dramatically would be criminal.