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Monday, 16 January 2012
Welcoming Michael Gove's plans to overhaul the school ICT
curriculum, the new president of the Girls' Schools
Association (GSA) has said that any decent ICT teacher is already
way ahead of the ICT curriculum in terms of day to day classroom
Computer science graduate Louise Robinson, who is a former
computing teacher at Bolton School Girls' Division and new
president of the GSA, said: "It's great that the education
secretary has identified how inappropriate the curriculum is to
contemporary life. However, up and down the country skilled
teachers and their pupils are already way ahead of the basic
curriculum. Good ICT teaching depends on inspirational, creative
teachers as much as it does on a lively curriculum. A poor teacher
will follow the curriculum doggedly. An excellent ICT teacher
doesn't confine her lessons to how to use Microsoft Office,
whatever the curriculum says. It's actually fairly commonplace
these days for pupils to be designing their own websites and apps.
As well as re-designing the curriculum, we need to make sure we
have forward-thinking people to interpret and teach it."
Mrs Sarah Brace, Head of ICT at Bolton School Girls' Division
added: "Within ICT we are always developing our
At key stage 3, there is currently a large focus on creativity,
allowing the girls to spend a significant amount of time on
animation, graphics and web development. We have had speakers in
from major ICT organisations and are preparing a programming event
for our Year 8 World of Work Day. Pupils are also provided with
opportunities to develop a wide range of skills within the
extra-curricular programme, including image manipulation, movie
making and further animation work.
Within the GCSE courses, we provide ample opportunities for
pupils to go beyond the basic specifications. We give them the
chance to develop a wide range of software skills and knowledge
that will clearly enhance their employability.
At A level we take this further giving pupils the chance to
complete a major project that does not have to be based on a
standard piece of software such as a database. It can be a program
that runs on a PC, a mobile phone app or pupils could produce a
Across the quad, in the Boys' Division, Head of ICT Mr
Peter Humphrey said: "Obviously we are unencumbered by the current
National Curriculum; and, consequently, we pick those skills that
we think important from it, and then go it alone.
We are helped in this by splitting the traditional ICT content
across Design Technology and ICT, with the inclusion of some logic
and programming. There has been no GCSE Computing qualification for
many years - this, rather than ICT based, would provide challenge
for able and interested boys."
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