Computer Science as a School Subject: Seizing the Opportunity

Rate this resource

This briefing note, intended for Governors and Senior Management Teams, fleshes out the background to the introduction of computing in schools and is intended as a basis for a strategic debate about reform of the ICT curriculum. It has been written mainly with schools in mind, but the broad outline of the argument applies equally to Sixth Form and Further Education Colleges.

The main points in the paper highlight that Computer Science:

• To be the fourth science.

• Is a discipline, like mathematics physics, or history. It has a body of knowledge, established techniques, and thinking skills, that will last students a lifetime.

• Is educationally important. Just as we give every student the opportunity to learn the workings of physics, chemistry, and biology, because they live in a physical, chemical, biological world, so we should offer every student the opportunity to learn the workings of the digital systems that pervade their world.

• Embodies logic, rigour and problem solving.

• Is economically important, because digital systems have become a critical component of our entire society. Offering Computer Science directly addresses the problem that ICT has gradually become a low-status, low-achievement subject.

This resource has been provided by Computing at School.

Show health and safety information

Please be aware that resources have been published on the website in the form that they were originally supplied. This means that procedures reflect general practice and standards applicable at the time resources were produced and cannot be assumed to be acceptable today. Website users are fully responsible for ensuring that any activity, including practical work, which they carry out is in accordance with current regulations related to health and safety and that an appropriate risk assessment has been carried out.


Published by


Share this resource