Yesterday (5/7/2016) Education Minister Hekia Parata announced the formal integration of Digital technology into the New Zealand Curriculum. “This is the first change to the New Zealand Curriculum since its introduction in 2007 and reflects our Government’s commitment to championing 21st century practice in teaching and learning,” says Ms Parata.
“It will ensure that we have an education system that prepares children and young people for a future where digital fluency will be critical for success.”
“Digital technology will be included as a strand of the Technology learning area in the New Zealand Curriculum, and as a whenu within the Hangarau Wāhanga Ako of Te Marautanga o Aotearoa,” says Ms Parata.
“The information technology sector is one of the fastest growing sectors in New Zealand, with a demand for skilled graduates. This step will support young people to develop skills, confidence and interest in digital technologies and lead them to opportunities across the diverse and growing IT sector.”
Digital Technologies in schools will stay with vocation-based subjects such as hard materials (formerly wood- and metalwork), food technology (cooking) and textiles (sewing), but be extended from senior secondary level down to Year 1 .
2020’s interim Executive Director, Laurence Millar says “It is good to see that government understands that digital technology is a core skill for everyone in the 21st century.”
Digital Literacy is already essential for life in today’s world and there is existing digital inequality. Our programmes address this through building access, skills and confidence:
Access: Computers in Homes addresses the access affordability barrier for families with school age children with no Internet in their home.
Skills: Computers in Homes builds introductory digital skills in the caregivers in participating families. Our Stepping UP programme offers introductory digital skills training with libraries to all, Kiwiskills Jobseeker prepares people with essential digital skills needed for employment, and more advanced courses are accredited to NCEA Level 2 and international ICDL certificated.
Confidence: Our learning pathways are tailored for different learner groups, use effective learning styles they are comfortable with, and focus on building confidence as well as capability.
The Government say they will now consult with stakeholders, design new curriculum content, and develop achievement objectives across the whole learner pathway. It will be fully integrated into the New Zealand Curriculum and Te Marautanga o Aotearoa in 2018.