Communicator (communicator) wrote,
Communicator
communicator

Gove on ICT this week

I haven't written anything about Michael Gove's proposals on computing in schools, which he announced this week. I don't think he's actually saying very much that is concrete.

I don't want to jump in and project bad things onto the void at the centre of his speech, though I do think that many people are projecting 'things I wish would happen' onto that space. For example computery people on the Guardian site saying 'Great, now all schools will teach Linux', or the author of The Geek Atlas writing 'We should look forward to a brighter future built by today's 11-year-olds ... it's time for a British computing renaissance.'

Basically Gove is abolishing the old ICT curriculum - which was definitely poor and needed to go, no argument. In its place he says schools will have the opportunity to choose to deliver better quality and content.
The existing Programme of Study will remain on the web for reference. But no English school will be forced to follow it any more. From this September, all schools will be free to use the amazing resources that already exist on the web. Universities, businesses and others will have the opportunity to devise new courses and exams.

I am not clear about how he is going to enable improvement, or ensure that schools don't use the freedom to offer something less ambitious, rather than more challenging. Particularly as many teachers have no training in technology. However, there might be proposals coming up which will fill the void. Honestly, it would be too easy for me to say 'I bet this is all a big con with nothing to back it up'. Of course I suspect this is another example of a politician saying something which is quite at odds with the actual effect of the proposals, but I don't know enough to say for sure.
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