Last updated: 12.02.14

Computer coding to be taught alongside the Three Rs in schools

With the government having recently launched the Year of Code campaign - which is designed to promote computer science and engage people of all ages with the world of computing - a major step has now been taken to ensure that Britain's schoolkids get a head-start on their global competitors, after significant funding was pledged for the development of technological learning in schools.

It had previously been announced that computer coding would be introduced to the national curriculum from September of this year, meaning children as young as five will now start learning to read and write the code that is used in the creation of software.

To help this process, the government has now set aside £500,000 to facilitate the training of teachers, thus ensuring that students receive the highest quality instruction.

The importance of receiving a top-class education in the field of technology and computing is not something that has been lost on parents, with the Daily Mail reporting that a recent survey indicated that 94 per cent of mothers and fathers with children aged five to 16 consider these skills to be vital in today's job market.

Reading into this figure, it's clear that computer coding is now seen as equal in importance with the three Rs - reading, writing and arithmetic.

Previously, the ICT curriculum had focussed on teaching youngsters to use computer programs, although the new syllabus will teach them to write and create these programs.

Commenting on the funding allocation, education secretary Michael Gove said: "The new computing curriculum will give our children the skills they need to succeed in the 21st century. That is why we replaced the obsolete and boring curriculum with one that is forward-thinking, modern, and drawn up by teachers, industry experts and leading technology firms. "