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Computer science part of English Baccalaureate

CAS are delighted that DfE have finally announced their decision re Computer Science and that it is to be included as an EBacc subject. It’s a bold move. See:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-21261442

Right from the start CAS has argued that computer science should be thought of as a key part of every child’s education, like english, maths, science, languages, and humanities; and not just a specialist subject for socially-inadequate geeks. This announcement shows that the DfE is signed up to this broad view, in deed as well as word.

In October 2012 BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT submitted a 51 page report on behalf of a panel of advisors to the DfE recommending Computer Science to be included as a science in the EBacc. represented on the panel were colleagues from Higher Education, industry, school representatives, profesional associationas and learned societies.

The speech given by Michael Gove at BETT 2012 signalled a change in the way ICT was viewed in our education system and he set a challenge:

"If new Computer Science GCSEs are developed that meet high standards of intellectual depth and practical value, we will certainly consider including Computer Science as an option in the English Baccalaureate."

The report made a very strong case for this (the full vesion is available here) and compared existing GCSEs in Computer Science against e.g. Physics to test if they were suitable for inclusion as an EBacc subject against criteria dictated by the DfE.

The announcement from the DfE (30th January 2013) show that they are taking Computer Science very seriously.  Computer Science is now the fourth science!  This is a seismic change for our schools.  The press release from the DfE is here. #

They also state:

"The previous ‘harmful’ ICT curriculum was removed in 2012 and will be replaced soon with a new programme of study focused on computer science."

We look forward to seeing the new programme of study - due to be published for consultation later this month.

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