St Bernadette’s Catholic Primary School in Lancaster has become the 3,000th school in the UK to take part in a nationwide drive to help teachers get to grips with computing.The Barefoot Computing Project, which has now reached more than 1.5 million pupils across the UK, works with primary teachers to help them develop the confidence, knowledge and skills they need to teach computer science.
Led by BT and the BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT, Barefoot offers free teaching-resources and volunteer-led training workshops, designed to help primary school teachers get confident when teaching computer science and computing skills.
Since its launch within the 2014/5 academic year, more than 1,000 BT volunteers have delivered 3,000 free workshops and have supported over 50,000 teachers, reaching around 1.5million school children across the UK. In the North West alone, more than 1,400 schools have registered for Barefoot.
The 3,000th workshop was attended by the teachers at St Bernadette’s at the end of the day after classes and delivered by David Clingain from Lancaster, a BT sales team leader.
Receiving a celebratory hamper to mark the milestone workshop being held at St Bernadette’s Catholic Primary School, year five teacher, Clare Round, said: “We were delighted to host the 3,000th Barefoot workshop and to receive our celebratory hamper. Following the training, we’re confident our computer science lessons will be more exciting than ever!”
Kieran Charleson, BT’s North West regional director, said: “Computing is a vital skill for the future of the North West. For the individual, it opens the door to a world of possibilities.
“In the North West, Barefoot volunteers are running workshops at schools the length and breadth of the region, giving teachers the confidence to teach computing to young people. Those skills will be used to successfully navigate a whole host of real-world challenges as they go through life.”
Karen Hayton, head of BT’s Barefoot programme, said: “BT is delighted Barefoot has reached this major milestone, because we know that the next generation’s life chances will be improved by being able to thrive in the digital world. Computational thinking provides the building blocks of the digital world – like logic, abstraction and algorithms. In an era shaped by tech, these are the core abilities children need.We want to make tech literacy as important as reading and writing from the start.”
Getting involved with the Barefoot programme is easy and free. Teachers just need to visit http://www.barefootcas.org.uk to register.
Barefoot is part of BT’s Tech Literacy ambition and forms part of the company’s long-term commitment to help build a culture of tech literacy for the UK, reaching five million young people by 2020.
Clare Round, year five teacher from St Bernadette’s Catholic Primary School receiving a celebratory hamper from Karen Hayton – BT’s head of BT’s Barefoot programme with David Clingain - BT Barefoot Volunteer and St Bernadette’s pupils Thomas Horton, Serenna Davis, Annalise Bamforth and Shayan Ahmed.
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