We need a comprehensive digital education for every school pupil. When digital skills are becoming ever more crucial to all areas of life, from work and learning, to social inclusion, there can be no excuse for leaving anyone behind. With that comprehensive education, we also need to make sure that it is joined-up. Computing education today is in danger of becoming fixated on coding. Students should have the opportunity to learn the basics of computing, including coding in addition to digital literacy skills.

 “…every child should have an opportunity to be exposed to the fundamentals of computing to the same extent that they learn biology or physics. The aim is not to transform all children into biologists, physicists or ICT professionals, but to provide them with essential concepts of these disciplines”
—‘Computing and Digital Literacy: Call for a Holistic Approach’, ECDL Foundation

Quotes on computing and digital literacy

“Researchers and policy makers urgently need to broaden their thinking about digital skills. There is too little knowledge about the basic digital skills needed to participate fully in everyday life. The current focus on higher level skills such as coding is overshadowing the debate. These skills are of course important for the economy, but since we do not understand what impact the lack of basic digital skills has on a lack of opportunities to participate in the economic, social and cultural life of Britain, we need to go back to basics. More work is needed to think systematically about which digital skills are necessary to achieve tangible beneficial social outcomes and avoid those which are potentially negative.”
—Ellen Helsper, London School of Economics

“Computational thinking is a fundamental skill for everyone, not just for computer scientists. To reading, writing, and arithmetic, we should add computational thinking to every child’s analytical ability.”
Jeannette M. Wing, Carnegie Mellon University

“It would be wrong to see England’s Computing curriculum as being just about coding, or even just about computer science – it’s much more inclusive than that. As Britain’s Royal Society recommended, our curriculum now includes elements of computer science, information technology and digital literacy.”
Miles Berry, Computing at School

“We, as politicians, have a moral responsibility to ensure access to digital skills education.”
—Catherine Stihler, MEP

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