Programming comes to UK schools this September. Which means schools need to get ready for the code revolution. Britain will become the first nation to legislate programming for every primary and secondary school student. And come September, computer programming will be a compulsory part the school curriculum.
It may sound drastic, but the UK is so far behind the tech industry that something needs to happen. Can you name a UK tech giant or teen entrepreneur sporting a multi-billion app idea. No, there aren’t any.
So the code revolution needs to happen. The trouble is schools are still behind pupils when it comes to technology. So schools need to catch up quickly and lead the way on classroom tech.
The technology gap starts in schools
A recent study by Samsung addressed the top concerns of parents over technology in schools. Among the main issues was 72% of parents saying technology in the homes is better than the classroom. Which doesn’t bode well for the code revolution.
Technology is a fast-paced industry and you can’t play catch up with out-of-date systems. This leaves schools in a tough position. Schools don’t have the budget to update IT system on a yearly basis. So it’s important they make smart buying choices and get technology that will go the distance.
Naturally, kids will want the newest devices on the market. And many of them have the latest smartphones and computer setups at home. But schools will have to look at more sustainable options, like cloud-hosted software and vendors who specialise in education technology.
Keeping up with the kids
Technology is a fickle game. Tech giants invest a lot of money to develop new features and create a buzz around the next product. Gadgets go out of fashion very quickly and old tech becomes uncool. This might be an issue for pupils, but it’s not something schools can afford to get caught up in.
Schools need to focus on catching up with the core features their pupils use outside of the classroom. The kind of features that improve classroom performance and engage pupils more effectively. Touch screens and HD visuals, for example, are here to stay. These features have defined consumer technology for years and they’ll continue to do so.
Defining classroom technology
The fact is that classroom technology is for education. It serves a different purpose from the devices pupils use at home. Another challenge for schools will be finding the balance between devices that excite pupils and gets the job done.
Technology grabs attention because it’s new and exciting. Schools can’t compete with consumer devices on the latest design trends, camera specs or feature fads. To keep it engaging schools will have to rely on more practical features, designed to engage in the classroom. And they’ll need help from government policy and funding.
There is good news though. As classroom technology grows, vendors are pushing to meet the demand with better products and services. There are a number of companies who now specialise in education technology. These are the companies the education board will need to work with to ensure sustainable and effective products can last in the classroom.
Find out more about what SMART technology can do for you and your students, call the team today or complete the form below.