Government’s Action Plan for Education - Focus on extending ICT options in schools, new STEM targets

Government’s Action Plan for Education - Focus on extending ICT options in schools, new STEM targets and more apprenticeships welcomed by Engineers Ireland

16 September 2016 at 16:59

Engineers Ireland, the representative body for engineering in Ireland and whose membership represents the full spectrum of the engineering profession, has welcomed the publication of the Government’s Action Plan for Education.

Caroline Spillane, Director General, said: “We welcome the clarity and ambition of the Government’s three year (2016-2019) Action Plan for Education and its commitment to excellence and making the Irish education and training service the best in Europe.

“Ireland has a knowledge-based economy, and as a small island nation we are dependent on the quality and quantity of STEM graduates.  The new continuous improvement targets on STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) to be published in a new STEM policy statement will be critical, as we need to increase competence in STEM and set targets for take-up. A solid grounding in the STEM areas is naturally beneficial to a career in engineering.

“We welcome the plans for coding and ICT options to be extended in schools, with targets to roll-out coding to primary schools from 2018 and the teaching of computer science as a Leaving Certificate subject.”

Ms Spillane added: “Apprenticeships and further skills-based training, in addition to the traditional third-level path, offer real opportunity to develop professional and technical skills which are valued by employers and are now so badly needed in industry. The stated commitment to rejuvenate and enhance the range of employer-supported schemes and courses and to achieve a cumulative target of 50,000 apprenticeship and traineeship registrations to 2020, will open up many fulfilling opportunities for students into the diverse and exciting profession of engineering and other related sectors.”

Read the Action Plan for Education (PDF).