MIDDLESBROUGH CITY LEARNING CENTRE
A VISION FOR DEVELOPING AN ALL THROUGH DIGITAL PATHWAY
In the Teesside area there is an ambition to develop as a leading hub for the digital sector and to continue to develop as a hot bed of technology entrepreneurs. This development is being spearheaded by Digital City Business and The Institute of Digital Innovation at Teesside University. See section xiii for the objectives to achieve this ambition.
“Everything we do is geared toward making the North East of England the best place to develop your digital media, digital technology or creative business.” Digital City Business
‘Recovering from a global recession, the UK can play a leading role in developing the new economy that will shape the next 10 years. It will be a decade of challenges, but also one of opportunities. Tees Valley is ready; tackling head on the existing perceptions of the area and setting out the agenda for transformational change as local communities take greater responsibility in their future development.’ TVU (Tees Valley Unlimited) Aims and Ambitions
The work of these two effective organisations has led to the area hosting and mentoring over 200 start up businesses in the digital sector. Over the next 10 years these hundreds of businesses should lead to thousands of jobs being created in the digital sector on Teesside. If people from our area are not skilled to meet these positions they will miss out on employment and the work will go elsewhere. Our passion is to see a clear pathway for students growing up on Teesside to move through their education and have an equal opportunity to gain a career in the digital sector. However a key part of that pathway seems to be missing and this vision document aims to outline a road map for completing the pathway.
The section of the path we believe is missing includes the following elements: 1. A knowledge of, and access to, the digital community developing in Teesside from an early age. (these exciting careers are a serious option for you!)
2. A skill set being taught in schools that is appropriate for the sector and a clear pathway through further and higher education. (You need these skills and qualifications and you can get them from these places!)
3. The opportunity to become part of a community of similarly skilled young people to grow alongside one another and network together. Alongside a creative 3rd place space for that community to meet up and get creative. (If you are involved with these people, at this place, creative ideas will emerge and business opportunities will be sparked!)
4. Opportunities to be seen by the main players in the local digital community both through work experience and forums where students can show off their work. (If you
number of adults who want to learn programming so they can teach programming. As this happens there is an opportunity to influence the mix of skills to be taught in local schools so that they are partly specific to the skills needed in the Teesside digital sector. At the same time parents are becoming aware of this need for their children as the following quote shows from C.A.S. (Computing At School)* “CAS are getting an increasing number of enquiries from parents asking what they can do to help their <insert age here> aged son/daughter improve their coding/programming skills. I reply with the standard Scratch/BYOB, Alice, Greenfoot, YouSrc, Python etc., with also some recommendations to websites such as Udacity, iTunes-U and so on.”
The following vision is based on the pathway young people could take to be in the best position possible to contribute with their maximum potential to the development of digital innovation and enterprise on Teesside. It shows how Middlesbrough City Learning Centre re-branded as ‘The Hub’ would be ideally placed in both expertise and environment to be the hub of this pathway moving Teesside forwards.
impress these people you put yourself in line for offers of work and business support)
This opportunity comes at a crucial time when education is restructuring the way IT is taught in schools and schools have a certain amount of freedom over the next two years to be creative with what they teach. More computer science is to be taught in schools and at the same time many teachers don’t have the skills and confidence to teach it. Therefore we have a
* see glossary ii
“A skills problem ...Yet, the sad truth is that we are already starting to lose our cutting edge: in just two years, it seems the UK’s video games industry has dipped from third to sixth place in the global development rankings. Meanwhile, the visual effects industry, though still enjoying very rapid growth, is having to source talent from overseas because of skills shortages at home. That is mainly a failing of our education system – from schools to universities – and it needs to be tackled urgently if we are to remain globally competitive.” ...that starts with schools “The industries suffer from an education system that doesn’t understand their needs. This is reinforced by a school curriculum that focuses in ICT on office skills rather than the more rigorous computer science and programming skills which high-tech industries like video games and visual effects need. As the curriculum is overhauled and syllabuses are brought into line with the most challenging in the developed world, we need to look to places like Singapore and Finland so that the computing and artistic skills that are vital to high-tech, creative industries are given the impetus they need.At the same time, young people and their teachers need a greater awareness of the job prospects in these industries and the qualifications that can take them there. STEM subjects – the sciences, technology, engineering and maths – and art are key to success. Raised awareness of this will alone make these subjects more attractive to young people” Next Gen. Transforming the UK into the world’s leading talent hub for the video games and visual effects industries. A Review by Ian Livingstone and Alex Hope
5 - 10
@Key Stage 1 and 2 At this stage pupils would ideally be experiencing an introduction to controlling computers and basic programming. They would be practiced in creative thinking and ideas development, have awareness of the digital sector developing in Teesside and have access to optional coding clubs. They would be telling stories through basic animation and video.
KS 1 AND 2
Possible Roles for the HUB M AIN R OLES 1. Support for teachers delivering computer control modules. 2. After school coding clubs set up in primary schools with volunteers. 3. Service level agreement with schools to support CPD, ICT consultation. 4. Experience days at the centre based around the digital sector
It has become clear that some primary schools struggle to deliver control technology as required by the current National Curriculum and as the curriculum changes to include more control and programming content the need for effective CPD and in class support is clearly going to increase. This is something the CLC has been involved with for the last 10 years. The orgainisation ‘Coding Clubs’ has recently launched a nationwide primary school initiative to get coding clubs running after school with the help of local volunteers and have a large take up of people wanting to help children learn these skills. This would obviously need to be monitored and child protection policy met in full. With the CLC’s expertise it is ideally placed to offer this as part of a package to schools. Again the CLC has experience and expertise of offering technology training to teachers. As part of a Service Level Agreement the CLC could offer training for teachers to ready them for the introduction of a more logical thinking based curriculum. The CLC could also offer expertise in order to assist schools in selecting and procuring the most appropriate equipment for school use. Access can be made available for the schools within the agreement to periodic taylor made experience days at the centre that introduces pupils to the world of IT. Pathway waypoints: 1. Basic grounding in logical thinking. 2. Introduction to coding. 3. Knowledge of IT as a career possibility. 5
A GES 11 - 13
@Key Stage 3
In key stage 3, as well as the programs of study followed in curriculum time as currently prescribed by the CAS computing curriculum document, pupils would benefit from working on projects with actual outcomes. Looking at the mechanisms around developing an idea into a product and starting to have increased autonomy in developing their technical skills.
K EY S TAGE 3
Possible Roles for the HUB M AIN R OLES 1. Coding and enterprise academy opportunity for selected students. 2. Support for transition to a more logical thinking based IT curriculum. 3.
Access to local Tech. Start-up experiences.
4. 3rd place space for study and collaboration.*
A coding and enterprise academy is proposed to introduce the students to a less formal more post modern, entrepreneurial environment. It brings together coding language learning with entrepreneurial enterprise skills. Giving students experiences in a project based course pulling on the expertise and experiences of local entrepreneurs and university students and professors. At the same time supporting the students development in the STEM** subjects.
Access to the academy for those other than the students selected by the schools would be at a cost and would have to run separately from the selected pupils. Scholarships may be an option, possibly made available through a local philanthropic group or funding stream. CLC facilities lend themselves to this kind of technology based group work. See Appendix 1 A series of CPD opportunities could be made available for teachers of IT to be up-skilled to feel confident delivering coding and programming in the classroom. These would include workshops, seminars and access into the coding and enterprise academy The CLC is currently securing opportunities for school pupils to tour BOHO* and receive input from local entrepreneurs. This would be made solely available to the schools through the CLC. The CLC boasts a highly connected environment with a constant flow of activities around the digital sector available for students to use for their own study and working on tech. projects. Comfortable seating and quality refreshments and plenty of synergistic opportunities would also be available.
The academy would run for Four afternoons a week from 4pm to 6pm.
Pathway waypoints: 1. Introduced to the digital sector in Teesside. 2. Becoming proficient in coding languages. 3. Interacting with older students further down the pathway. 4. Experience of creative problem solving model similar to the Hyper-Island structure.
* and **See Glossary
* See Glossary 7
14 - 16
@Key Stage 4 During KS4 students are starting to develop a career focus and deciding on the subjects they should study to give them their best chance. It would benefit them at this stage to be introduced to people who have already set up businesses in the digital sector. It would be helpful for them to develop a solid skills base (including that covered by the school curriculum) so that on entering higher education they are well prepared. It would be an advantage if they had developed creative thinking skills, problem solving skills and become more autonomous learners.
Possible Roles for the HUB M AIN R OLES 1. The coding and enterprise academy. 2. Access to the digital community in Teesside. 3. Access to professional networking events with DigitalCity and to potential Pier 38 scheme (Mainly for post 16 but flexibility built in) 4. Access to DIY education opportunities. 5. Access to digital examinations. 6. Apprentice enterprise opportunity. 7. Support for transition to a more logical thinking based IT curriculum. 8. 3rd place space for study and collaboration.
A coding and enterprise academy is set up to introduce the students to a less formal more post modern, entrepreneurial environment. It brings together coding language learning with entrepreneurial enterprise skills and experiences in a project based course pulling on the expertise and experiences of local entrepreneurs and university students and professors.
Access to the academy for those other than the students selected by the schools would be at a cost. Scholarships could be made available through funding or even a local philanthropic group. See Appendix 1 The CLC is currently securing opportunities for school pupils to tour BOHO and receive input from local entrepreneurs. This would be made solely available to the schools through the CLC. This could include the selecting of some students to represent their age group at Digital City networking events and receiving talks from and introduction to the teams developing at the proposed Digital City ‘Pier 38’ experience. A series of CPD opportunities could be made available for teachers of IT to be up-skilled to feel confident delivering coding and programming in the classroom. These would include workshops, seminars and access into the coding and enterprise academy The CLC boasts a highly connected environment with a constant flow of activities around the digital sector available for students to use for their own study and working on tech. projects. Comfortable seating and quality refreshments and plenty of synergistic opportunities would also be available. Pathway waypoints: 1. Established relationships within the sector. 2. Opportunity to engage with students and lecturers in higher education. 3. Opportunities to take part in networking events. 4. High level of coding competency. 5. Regularly involved in creative thinking and problem solving using ‘Hyper Island’ type methodology. (see glossary) 9
A GES 16-19
@ Post 16 Students are now taking career paths and it is important for them to have access to advice and opportunities. The ability to move straight into the digital sector through apprenticeships or putting a team together to start a small business. Also knowledge of the appropriate courses available at further and higher education. Availability of 3rd place spaces is important to this age group to develop their ideas, skills and their network in comfortable â€˜grown-upâ€™ space.
Possible Roles for the HUB M AIN R OLES 1. The coding and enterprise academy 2. Apprenticeship opportunities. 3. Access to professional networking events with DigitalCity and to potential Pier 38 scheme 4. Access to digital examinations. (Test centre) 5. 3rd place space.
A coding and enterprise academy is set up to introduce the students to a less formal more post modern, entrepreneurial environment. It brings together coding language learning with entrepreneurial enterprise skills and experiences in a project based course pulling on the expertise and experiences of local entrepreneurs and university students and professors. At post 16 it is imagined that some of the students would assist in the running of the academy. See Appendix 1
The centre is likely to be let to groups as a base for apprentices to access their day of training away from the work place. While at the centre there will be opportunities to engage in the digital sector seminars and network opportunities to further there knowledge and skills. Digital city is proposing a â€˜Pier 38â€™ type environment subject to funding. (A fertile informal incubator environment based on the San Francisco Pier 38 where many influential tech start-ups started life.) The CLC intend to be connected with this proposed development and be able to facilitate the flow of creative young people into this environment. The CLC has all the necessary requirements to be a test centre for online examinations. DIY education is taking off and it is important for there to be a test centre locally for students wanting to validate the study they have completed online. The centre offers a highly connected environment with a constant flow of activities around the digital sector available for students to use for their own study and working on tech. projects. Comfortable seating and quality refreshments would be made available and plenty of synergistic opportunities. Pathway waypoints: 1. Knowledge of and access to DIY learning. 2. Basic knowledge of how to protect ideas, set up a company, get support for business and routes to funding. 3. Having opportunities to impress local employers. 4. High level of coding and programming. 5. Many connections within the local digital sector. 6. Experience in pitching an idea. 11
Life long learning For both those following the pathway from schools and for those looking to retrain there are many digital opportunities. This demographic benefit from access to digital learning, evening classes, specialised seminars on key areas of professional development and networking opportunities to gain access to the digital sector. There is also the need for online test centres to be able to complete online courses and gain certification.
Possible Roles for the HUB M AIN R OLES 1. Test centre. 2. Advanced apprentice opportunities. 3. Support for DIY education. 4. Access to professional seminars and workshops. 5. Access to 3rd place space for working and networking.
The CLC has all the necessary requirements to be a test centre for online examinations. DIY education is taking off and it is important for there to be a test centre locally for students wanting to validate the study they have completed online. The CLC is exploring the Possibility with Teesside University to provide advanced apprenticeships in IT. Digital city is proposing a â€˜Pier 38â€™ type environment subject to funding. (A fertile informal incubator environment based on the San Francisco Pier 38 where many influential tech start-ups started life.) The CLC intend to be connected with this proposed development and be able to facilitate the flow of creative young people into this environment. The centre intends to offer a series of professional seminars put on for students and local people. These would be to sign up for online at a small cost. The centre offers a highly connected environment with a constant flow of activities around the digital sector available for students to use for their own study and working on tech. projects. Comfortable seating and quality refreshments and plenty of synergistic opportunities. Pathway waypoints: 1. Access to working facilities to develop ideas. 2. Access to online courses and testing. 3. Opportunities to engage talented young people as apprentices. 4. Awareness of routes to funding. 5. Courses and seminars available locally for professional development. 13
TEES VALLEY UNLIMITED - from the priority actions to move towards achieving the statement of ambition for Teesside
Learning and skills provision
Showing how learning and skills provision for the digital sector in Teesside is a priority action.
Glossary Pier 38 San Francisco's Pier 38, which houses dozens of startups has become synonymous with the young digital entrepreneurial scene. Digital City are looking into the possibility of setting up a similar creative environment on Teesside subject to funding.
Coding Computer programming, the process of designing, writing, testing, debugging / troubleshooting, and maintaining the source code of computer programs. As information many applications become largely web based the process of programming source code for web applications becomes a major industry skill requirement.
C.A.S. Computing at school is a nation wide organisation promoting the increase of teaching pupils how computers work and are programed as well as just how to use them.
Hyper Island methodology *Active participation and learning by experiencing, doing and reflecting Trial and error. *Mistakes are often the strongest learning experience. *Working and developing as an individual in teams. *Using interactive media as a tool for implementing change and improvement. *Guidance to self insight and group dynamics. *Real clients, real needs, real learning.
Tees Valley Unlimited Tees Valley Unlimited are the Local Enterprise Partnership for the area and have responsibility for delivering growth and economic equity across the Tees Valley.
3rd place space 3rd place space refers to social space that is not work and not home. Occupants of Third Places have little to no obligation to be there. They are not tied down to the area financially, politically, legally, or otherwise and are free to come and go as they please.
CPD Continued Professional Development. On going training for people in their professional area of work xv
BOHO Boho stands for Boro Soho. Developed by Digital City business, Boho Zone is the commercial quarter for Middlesbroughâ€™s digital media, digital technology and creative sectors.
DIY education DIY education has come about through the sudden surge in Universities putting degree level courses online free to be accessed by the public. People study in their own time and then take an examination which is the only paid part of the qualification.
Appendix 1 Coding and Enterprise academy 12 WEEKS • Groups = 4 on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday • (3 x school selected, 1 x parent buy in) • Pupils prior knowledge = Mixed but keen students • Total number of pupils places = 80 • Hours per week = 8 + 2 admin = 10 • Essential staff per session = 2 (Centre staff and volunteer/ university student/staff) • Additional staff per 12 weeks = 3 • Equipment = computers – post its – flip charts – ipods for apps – app-store developer account
Draft course content: Week 1: introduction to codecademy and introduction to Hyper Island thinking process – A story from BOHO Week 2: Coding with Alice (physics in 3d space)– catch up on Java – teams and task Week 3: Coding with python? Research team task – health and wellbeing /local history/digital community/local cuture (locate the problem) stimulus, plusing+, all ideas, categorizing, reducing the best. Week 4: Coding essentials – flow diagrams Solution design – planing the development Talk on the importance of design. Week 5: Coding essentials HTML5 – Product design – begin the build Week 6: Build and test Week 7: Build and test – develop the pitch Week 8: Develop the pitch story – Problem definition. Week 10: Re-build and test – apps on store Week 11: Pitch to the dragons – results from the downloads Week 12: Routes to success – visitor from University
their own ideas in a structured way as one of their main gains from the course.” (based on the ‘Apps for Good’ course information.)
Appren3ce enterprise Spaces for 20 students to take up IT apprenticeships at the CLC. Led by a dedicated manager. Possibly organized by the college but giving the students free access to the activities going on at the centre like the evening seminars.
“While learning technical skills is valuable, this is this is much more than just “programming course”. As well as gaining a useful, hands-on understanding of the technology market and its design process, the coding and enterprise academy also gives students the opportunity to: • use cutting-edge technology they are familiar with and enthusiastic about in an engaging, creative and constructive way • address school/local issues positively and proactively; offering excellent links to student voice and citizenship • learn in a personalised and self-directed way • gain experience of working both independently and within teams with “real world” pressures and expectations • develop essential “soft” skills, including communication/ presentation skills, teamwork, critical and analytical thinking and problemsolving • engage with a “real world” audience and work with expert and professional networks and processes in an environment distinct from school This is no ordinary course and doesn’t just “teach a subject”. It helps students ready themselves for employment, self-employment and entrepreneurship in the real world. Schools report that this course noticeably improves their students’ self-confidence and aspirations, as well as giving them real confidence in presenting both to peers and adult audiences. The students themselves also note that the ability to generate and think through
Opportunity to use the CLC systems, software and hardware to learn with. Access to local businesses for the placements and visitors to inspire and inform. Access to local schools for placements. Equipment – digital (room)– old computers – access to refreshments. DIY education A key part of the DIY education will be the evening seminar series that will allow for local people to access professional development at low cost from local digital community. As the areas of most interest emerge follow up workshops will be established for local people. xviii
DIY education will also benefit from the development of 3rd place space in the centre. A comfortable area with good refreshments a positive wi-fi experience and access to printing, faxing and photocopying. One member of staff on hand to give advice and make learning possible.
Requirements â€“ an online booking system with payment facility and great marketing â€“ member of staff responsible for booking seminars and refreshments for each seminar 3rd place space, public wi-fi, public access.