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23 June 2023

Transforming Tech Education event London

Teachers, researchers, and friends joined us to celebrate a vision for the future of education

CAS celebrated and shared its ambitious vision for the future at its Transforming Tech Education event in London last week. It was an opportunity to share and shape CAS’ ambitions for the future, celebrate developments in computing education and hear inspiring talks from computing education experts.

The lively afternoon event was attended by teachers, researchers, industry representatives, and the CAS team. It showcased CAS’ commitment to leading the way in meeting the challenges and embracing exciting trends in computing education – in a collaborative way.

Director of CAS, Dr Jon Chippindall shared details of CAS’ ambitions for its future activities, development and growth in his presentation, CAS – Their Tech Futures 2023.

"CAS is embarking on an exciting journey towards a future where computing education is truly inclusive, empowering all students to thrive in our increasingly digital world.

“Our ambitious programme for CAS encompasses three key strands: TechTogether, TechTeach, and Techspiration. Through these initiatives, we aim to foster inclusivity, support teachers, and inspire young minds by showcasing the vast potential of technology in shaping our world and creating positive change."

Jon outlined how CAS activities will support three core themes:

  • TechTogether – supporting teachers to deliver a computing education that is truly inclusive for all
  • TechTeach – supporting teachers to deliver high-quality computing education through CPD, education research and events
  • Techspiration – bringing the world of tech into the curriculum, demystifying innovation and inspiring young people; showcasing tech career pathways that can change society and the world around us.

Jon continued; “These are exciting times for CAS, after recently becoming a recipient of an Epic MegaGrant, CAS is looking forward to continuing to support teachers across the UK in delivering a high-quality computing education. We’re particularly excited about working with the Epic Education Team on 3D VR initiatives for schools.”

The afternoon was hosted by BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT in its London offices. Julia Adamson, Managing Director, Education and Public Benefit at BCS, welcomed guests to the event, saying:

“CAS was founded out of optimism, aspiration and collaboration and that continues to be the case. It’s a network of collaboration, debate and discussion and has enabled teachers to have a strong voice and role in shaping computing education.”

The afternoon included a presentation from Prof Miles Berry, from University of Roehampton, on AI in Computing Education. He looked at the transformative potential of AI in developing children’s problem-solving and creativity and how it can be used to teach coding and used within established teaching resources such as Scratch.

A fascinating panel discussion brought together an expert panel; Prof Simon Peyton-Jones, co-founder of CAS; Dr Jane Waite, Senior Research Scientist; Mark Martin MBE, Assistant Professor in Computer Science and Education Practice at Northeastern University and Isabella Lieghio, Computing specialist teacher and education consultant.

The panel discussed; ‘The challenges and opportunities of educating on the big themes in computing’. The discussion looked at the challenges of keeping up with evolving developments in computing education and ensuring equitable access to quality education for all students. The panellists discussed strategies for integrating AI and other emerging technologies into the curriculum, while also addressing the need to bridge the digital divide and provide equal opportunities for every child. There was lively question and answer session as well as discussion about the current realities of delivering the computing in the classroom.

An online presentation about 3D VR Education from Steve Isaacs of Epic games showcased how exciting creative developments can be used in the classroom.

Speaking after the event, Julie Lottering, Director of Unreal Engine Education, said CAS plays a fundamental role in providing access to computing education across the UK.

“We’re thrilled that with the additional support through Epic MegaGrants they’ll be able to continue to enhance the already high-quality education for thousands of students for years to come,” she said.

“Moreover, the Unreal Engine education team is also excited to collaborate with CAS on inclusive, low-cost initiatives for schools that will increase access to real-time 3D skills, creating new opportunities and providing a path to successful careers for a new generation of creators.”

CAS' Transforming Tech Education event celebrated the launch of a new era of activities, by bringing together passionate professionals and experts in computing education. It was clear that CAS’ ambitious vision and dedication to inclusivity, teacher support, and inspiring young minds, makes it well-positioned for a role shaping the future of computing education.

Read more: Reports of the panel discussion about the issues in computing education, plus ideas on AI to teach computing will be available here on the CAS website soon.