Minister for Education James Merlino and Member for Sydenham Natalie Hutchins today marked the start of the new Digital Technologies curriculum with a tour of Taylors Lakes Primary School’s new Coding and Technology space.
The space will be used by students and teachers from Taylors Lakes Primary and surrounding schools to hone their digital coding and critical thinking skills.
The school will draw on funding it has received under the Andrews Labor Government’s $566 million equity funding boost to employ a full-time specialist coding teacher in 2017.
The new Victorian curriculum – which will be implemented in government and Catholic schools this year – includes a strong focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) skills.
One of the new learning areas, Digital Technologies, focuses on developing students’ thought processes in order to unravel problems, and then design and generate digital solutions.
The Labor Government is investing $21.6 million to support teachers implementing the new curriculum and has set ambitious targets to boost student performance.
This includes a 25 per cent increase in the number of year nine students reaching the highest level of achievement in maths and 33 per cent more 15-year-olds reaching the highest levels in science.
The Government is also investing $125 million to create 10 Tech Schools, which will provide a shared campus for students from neighbouring secondary schools to access leading edge technology and resources for STEM subjects.
The STEM Catalysts initiative is training 60 teachers across 30 secondary schools to become experts who help fellow teachers bring science, technology, engineering and maths alive for Year 7 and 8 students.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino
“We want all Victorian kids to have the opportunity to develop the skills they need for the jobs of tomorrow.”
“The Digital Technologies curriculum will enable students to become confident and creative developers of digital solutions through computer coding and other advanced skills.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Innovation Philip Dalidakis
“Introducing coding and an understanding of digital technology in the school curriculum is a game-changer. It will give students the skills they need today, to do the jobs of tomorrow.”
Quotes attributable to Member for Sydenham Natalie Hutchins
“Taylors Lakes Primary School is a wonderful school and students are really grasping the opportunity to learn more about coding and critical thinking.”
“All students at the school participated in coding activities in their classrooms throughout 2016 and they are thriving in the Coding and Technology space.”