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[July 10, 2014]
Schools told to improve pupils' computer skills [Daily Post (Liverpool, England)]
(Daily Post (Liverpool, England) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) STANDARDS of teaching key computer skills in all secondary schools in Wales need to be improved, inspectors warn today.
A review of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) by the inspections service Estyn found classes in the subject were "good or better" in around half of the secondary schools.
The study, ICT At Key Stage 3, evaluated standards as a National Curriculum subject as well as the impact of as a key skill to support pupils' learning across other subjects.
Some schools were highlighted as case studies for good practice, including Ysgol y Creuddyn near Llandudno, Prestatyn High and The Maelor near Wrexham.
The report calls on the Welsh Government to implement a statutory framework for ICT from Foundation Phase to post-16 and takes into account developments in technology.
The report also highlighted steps that schools and local authorities/ regional consortia should take to improve teaching, monitoring and assessment.
Ann Keane, Chief Inspector of Schools, said: "Using digital technology is part of everyday life for many of us. Although there are pockets of good practice, all secondary schools need to improve the quality of teaching, and delivering and monitoring ICT across the curriculum." Innovations included Ysgol y Creuddyn school in Penrhyn Bay, where pupils create digital video on YouTube to support their learning of mathematics.
Prestatyn High School invited parents to contribute Pounds 1 a week to help make a difference - the school obtained 1,500 netbooks which were later upgraded.
"A full wireless network was installed within 12 months and sufficient high capacity printers strategically located around the school to allow both pupils and staff print access." This project ensured that every pupil, regardless of background, has consistent access to technology in and out of the classroom.
The Maelor School linked with Glyndw^ r University for teachers to work alongside lecturers to learn new basic programming skills and develop confidence in computer science to extend the subject for pupils.
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