Cod­ing re­ceives boost

Fund­ing for cod­ing and robotics ap­proved in Bur­nett

Central and North Burnett Times - - NEWS - Philippe Co­querand­

ABO­RIG­I­NAL and Tor­res Strait Is­lan­der school stu­dents in the North Bur­nett will be able to de­velop and test their cod­ing and robotics skills at pub­lic li­braries across Queens­land.

Min­is­ter for In­no­va­tion, Science and the Dig­i­tal Econ­omy Leeanne Enoch an­nounced ear­lier this week that eight com­mu­ni­ties will ben­e­fit from $157,000 in grants to sup­port li­braries and In­dige­nous Knowl­edge Cen­tres in their delivery of STEM.I.AM cod­ing and robotics ac­tiv­i­ties.

“In­creas­ing ac­cess to dig­i­tal tech­nolo­gies through this pro­gram is an­other pos­i­tive step to­wards clos­ing the gap and im­prov­ing the dig­i­tal in­clu­sion of Queens­land’s Abo­rig­i­nal and Tor­res Strait Is­lan­der peo­ples,” Ms Enoch said.

“In part­ner­ship with State Li­brary of Queens­land and lo­cal coun­cils, the STEM.I.AM cod­ing and robotics ac­tiv­i­ties will be avail­able to young peo­ple in the North Bur­nett, Au­rukun, Cook, Dou­glas, Glad­stone, Lo­gan, Pa­roo and Townsville.

These ac­tiv­i­ties are ex­pected to com­mence later this month.

“We hope en­gag­ing, in­no­va­tive pro­grams such as this en­cour­ages more Abo­rig­i­nal and Tor­res Strait Is­lan­der stu­dents to study STEM sub­jects at school that could spark their in­ter­est in a fu­ture ca­reer built on science, tech­nol­ogy, en­gi­neer­ing or maths,” Ms Enoch said.

North Bur­nett Re­gional Coun­cil Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Mark Pitt said it was great news for the re­gion and should help en­tice stu­dents to take up the sub­jects.

“It’s an ex­cel­lent grant and we thank the State Gov­ern­ment for their fund­ing,” Mr Pitt said.

“It will go to help­ing the stu­dents in our re­gion and men­tor­ing staff and help­ing the kids get train­ing and de­vel­op­ment.”

“We ap­plied for this grant but we’re happy our re­gion was suc­cess­ful with it, Eidsvold State School will be the first off the rank.”

State Li­brar­ian and CEO Vicki McDon­ald said li­braries pro­vide a sup­port­ive, hands-on en­vi­ron­ment where ev­ery­one has ac­cess to tech­nol­ogy, in­for­ma­tion and creative skill build­ing.

“Pro­vid­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties to build dig­i­tal lit­er­acy skills is vi­tal for In­dige­nous com­mu­ni­ties who of­ten ex­pe­ri­ence dig­i­tal ex­clu­sion,” Mrs McDon­ald said.

The new pro­grams and op­por­tu­ni­ties are ex­pected to com­mence later this month.

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