Minister Richard Bruton believes that coding should be made part of the Irish primary school curriculum.
The National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) is currently developing a new mathematics curriculum for primary schools, with a view to having a draft ready in spring 2017.
The minister, Richard Bruton, has pointed to the success of CoderDojo, the extra-curricular coding club for children, and declared his support for adding coding to the curriculum in a letter to the NCCA.
“I am acutely conscious that we need to give all children the best start in a world where such skills will be key to participation and success,” he said.
“There is much to learn from initiatives such as CoderDojo; I understand that the learning from this movement informed the development of the short course on coding in junior cycle. I hope that they can also inform your work on the primary curriculum.
“I would hope that it is possible to use some of the learnings of the CoderDojo project and similar initiatives in considering approaches to integrating coding into the primary curriculum,” he wrote.
He stated that the idea was a part of the Government’s attempts to “create a fair and compassionate society and ultimately to make life a little bit easier for people”.
“For the generation of children recently born and starting to enter primary school, creative thinking and problem-solving skills will be absolutely key to how they develop in reach and achieve their potential. In particular, their ability to think critically and develop solutions in the digital world will be vital for their prospects in life.”
Founded in Cork in 2011 by James Whelton and Bill Liao, CoderDojo is now a worldwide network of more than 1,000 voluntary coding clubs.