The CAS Board plays an important role in shaping CAS and comprises representatives from key stakeholders and participants in UK Computing education including: teachers (primary, secondary and further education), university academics, industry awarding organisation and school improvement advisors.
In the first of two parts , we'd like to introduce our current CAS Board members:
I started my career more than 20 years ago as a primary science and technology teacher, working in and around education and technology for my whole career. I now work as the Director of Education for BCS. It is a privilege and a pleasure to be part of the CAS Board - which means being able to make things happen and make things better! Our shared commitment to every child having the skills to thrive in the digital world comes to life through CAS: the community of teachers who support one another to develop subject knowledge, share and develop new ideas.
I trained to teach back in the 1970s. Since then, I have taught, been a LA Advisor, worked for various government agencies (creating the first IT curriculum in 1994), led government programmes (securing money for IT in schools and leading the £300 million Home Access programme), worked in the private sector and in research. I have three core beliefs – young people need access to technology and the understanding to make it work for them, not the other way round; they need to be taught by great teachers; and great teachers are also great learners. I now work with BCS as the Head of Education. The fit with CAS was obvious for me!
I am a teacher of computer science with sixteen years of classroom teaching experience, fourteen years of experience as a middle leader, and 2 years as a member of the extended leadership team. I am also a Fellow of the Chartered College of Teaching. I am passionate about computer science and ensuring that all pupils have access to a broad and balanced computing curriculum. I am particularly passionate about raising the participation of female students in computer science. I am thrilled to be a part of the CAS Board and am bringing this passion and enthusiasm to the role.
Prior to joining the University of Roehampton as Principal Lecturer, I spent 18 years in four schools, much of the time as an ICT coordinator and most recently as a Head Teacher. I serve on the BCS Academy Board and the Academic Board of the National Centre for Computing Education (NCCE). Over the years I have contributed to a number of computing related projects including: the National Curriculum Computing Programmes of Study; Switched on Computing; Barefoot Computing; QuickStart Computing; CAS TV; Project Quantum; Hello World; AI4K12; and Mathematical Futures. I give regular keynotes and CPD workshops on computing and education technology in the UK and abroad and have worked on a number of international consultancy projects involving curriculum development and CPD.
Why CAS? The switch from ICT to computing was only possible because of grass roots support, mainly in CAS. Computing At School's members continue to lead the way in developing pedagogy, approaches to assessment and teaching resources.
A Southend native, I’ve always had a keen interest in computers and technology. I spent many of my formative years with companions such as the IBM, Atari and Spectrum, which resulted in me graduating from East London University with an Honours Degree in Information Technology in 2006. I have taught ICT and Computer Science for 15 years; my current role is the Head of Faculty in a school in Surrey. My driving force is a desire to improve student learning in computing through an integrated program of quality teaching and support for all. I believe this is best achieved through the collaboration of professionals, from a variety of backgrounds. I have been on many adventures with CAS and look forward to this exciting opportunity: being on the CAS Board.
I trained and taught in state schools in Ilford and Lewisham where I saw the transformative nature of ICT and computing impacting students’ wellbeing, self-expression, and job prospects. I now train PGCE computing students at King’s College London and conduct research into computing education. My main areas of interest include diversity and computing, curriculum design and digital creativity. I believe in a broad interpretation of computing and in my spare time I run 3Dami, the world’s only 3D animation film studio for school students. I’m proud to be involved with CAS, helping to represent the views of teachers across the country.
Prior to starting my role as the Programme Manager for the NCCE, I was based in the West Country as senior leader in a multi academy trust. Part of my former role was to lead teaching and learning for the Academy and although most of my teaching was in secondary education, I was lucky enough to work with colleagues across all key stages, witnessing first-hand what a positive impact good professional development can have. Being a governor of my own children’s school enables me to continue to be involved at a school level, and as part of the CAS board, I am able to see the enormous impact that CAS has at a national level as well.
I am the Education Solutions Manager at Arm. I used to teach computing and also worked for the exam boards on computing reform and assessment. I am a keen advocate of both physical computing and project-based learning in STEM education. I’m delighted to serve on the CAS board to contribute to the collective work of driving computing education forward as well as building and promoting the outstanding grass roots Communities of Practice (CoP). Seeing teachers come together in the furtherance of the subject and its application is awe inspiring and I am proud to be able to be involved.
Dr Irene Bell
I have been a Principal Lecturer in Initial Teacher Education (ITE) for 24 years and prior to that I was a mathematics teacher for 11 years. Keeping our children safe while using technology is so important to me and I am delighted to be the Teacher Education Representative on Cyber Skills Security Group (NI). I am the Regional Academic Lead for Digital School House, an invited member of the International Association of STEM Leaders (Women in STEM) and a UK representative on the Council of European Professional Informatics Societies. I am the Head of STEM at Stranmillis University College and Chair of CAS for NI. It is a privilege to work with colleagues on the CAS Board ensuring that in Northern Ireland, the computing agenda continues to advance and benefit our children.
I began teaching by qualifying as a middle school Science Specialist and have taught computing/ICT at every educational level from early years to university. At present I teach computing science and ICT in three primary schools in Northern Scotland. I have developed and presented at a wide range of technology-based courses and events for schools and communities. In addition, I have been running a Coderdojo/Code Club (since January 2014) and am an active member of my local Makerspace.
I currently work at Google where I lead the Computer Science Education Strategy. In this role I work with internal Google teams and external computer science organizations globally to support rigorous education research and to improve computer science teaching and learning. Prior to joining Google in 2014, I spent ten years as the founding Executive Director of the Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) in the U.S. I have worked with many of CAS’s key leaders over the years and am delighted to have an opportunity to contribute to CAS’s important work.
Having been in education for nearly 23 years, with nearly all of that time spent as an IT, Computing or coding leader, I was excited to be a part of the CAS board. My professional roles have been diverse within education: a deputy and headteacher over 17 years in three different primary schools, an ITT Coding specialist teaching trainee teachers the Computing and E-Safety curriculum and a Local Leader of Education for the Alpha teaching School Hub in North East Essex. In my spare time I play bass in a band and instruct others in historical martial arts.
Jane Lisa Waite
Having worked in IT for over 20 years, as a teacher for 10, a teacher trainer, community developer and computer science academic for five years, I am now a computer science education researcher. My research at Queen Mary University of London is in teaching program design to primary pupils. I also work at the Raspberry Pi Foundation as a Research Scientist studying a wide range of computing education research topics. As the CAS Research Working Group Chair, I am dedicated to raising the profile of research and getting funding to develop the pipeline of researchers. I can never quite believe I am on the CAS board; I feel very lucky to be part of the group. If I can in some tiny way, crack open the research funding safe - then that's my job done!
Simon Peyton JonesI’ve been deeply involved in computing education since 2007, although I’m a computer science researcher at Microsoft Research and not primarily an educator. I was involved in the birth of CAS, I helped write the programmes of study for computing, and I have the honour to serve as CAS’s chair. CAS’s vibrant, grass-roots community of practice, fuelled by volunteers, is the envy of the world. I am very proud of what we have achieved already, and while huge challenges remain, I am optimistic about the future.