Wick High School Computing Science department is the first in Scotland to be selected as a certified partner with Apps for Good, a not-for-profit organisation that aims to encourage young people to use technology to tackle problems for social good.
The new third year cohort of 55 students will be working with industry experts throughout the year to research, build and market apps on the android mobile platform using App Inventor and will then, if selected, take part in a national competition where the winning teams will work with professional developers to re-launch their app and potentially make some money for the school.
As well as providing expertise, Apps for Good have given Wick High School 6 Dell Streak mobile phones to help them test their apps.
Computing Science teacher Mr Chris Aitken, has been working with Debbie Forster, the Chief Operating Officer to align the new Curriculum for Excellence outcomes for Technologies and /Computing Science to the course.
He said: “I am very excited at the opportunities that this will bring to our pupils. The ability to study App Development, with access to cutting edge technology and expertise brings a lot of relevance and enthusiasm to the course. I always like to quote the statistic that only 2% of Google employees say that they were not exposed to Computing Science at school.
“The Highland Council and Fujitsu Services have been instrumental in ensuring that our pupils have full access to the latest software. In Scotland, we are moving from ICT being taught as a subject to ensuring that it is embedded in the curriculum and that Computing Science stands on its’ own. This means pupils are taught skills that make them highly employable, such as computational thinking, programming and marketing, as well as the ability to work well with others.”
Fujitsu’s Scotland Country Director – Public Sector, Brodie Shepherd, said: “Congratulations to the Wick High School pupils for this achievement. Installing state-of-the-art computers in schools in the Highlands gives young people the chance to develop skills that can be applied not only in the classroom but also in future employment.
“I wish them all the best in the next stage of the competition.”
Apps for Good Apps is the brainchild of non-profit organisation CDI Europe, part part of the CDI global network, in partnership with Dell and supported by people and businesses in the technology and creative world.
Its aims are to:
• Ignite a passion for technology and social enterprise in young people in the UK;
• Encourage young people to use technology to tackle problems for social good;
• Increase the entrepreneurial skills and confidence of young people;
• Bridge the gap between young people and the business networks and knowledge that can help them;
• Build a connected world of young people, business volunteers and educators, inspiring each other to solve problems and succeed through the wonders of mobile technology.