Lomond School to ‘upskill local community’

Independent school on the west coast of Scotland has introduced new online platform to inspire pupils and 'upskill' local community

Lomond School in Dunbartonshire has introduced a new digital platform to inspire pupils and engage the local community.

The launch of the online platform, The Duke of York Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award (iDEA), was followed by a day of online learning and competition as students displayed their new digital skills.

Students earned credits towards a bronze, silver or gold award and scored points for their respective houses. In the autumn, the school will invite the local community to take part in the courses and learn digital skills from the highest achieving students.

In the first week alone, 158 participants completed more than 800 badges becoming tech savvy with subjects such as fake news, automation, graphic design, virtual reality and game designing.

The iDea not only teaches pupils digital skills but also explores online safety and internet ‘ethics’. It can be used by students and their parents to encourage intergenerational conversations about technology.

Lomond School was the first in Scotland to introduce a 1:1 iPad initiative and has embedded many online courses into next year’s curriculum.

Dr Alan MacBeath, head of physics and digital strategy, said: “It’s extremely important at Lomond School to continuously work towards lifelong learning, not only for our pupils, but for staff, parents and the local community.

“We’re really excited about the prospects offered by the course in terms of enterprise, employability and ambition to increase opportunities for all those who take part. Within 20 years, 90% of jobs will have a digital element so it’s vital that from the earliest point in their education, children are engaging online.

“It’s hard to put a value on the importance of teaching young people how to protect themselves on the internet. We hope that the course will educate pupils from a young age to behave in a sensible way, while having the confidence to manage their online activity rather than allowing it to have control over their lives.”