Tuesday 23 February 2016

Race to the Top coding competition winners

​The two winning schools have been announced in the Race To The Top coding competition.

The competition, organised by Northamptonshire County Council, the University of Northampton, The Worshipful Company of Information Technologists (WCIT) and Code Club, sought to improve the teaching of computer coding and develop pupils’ technology skills.

Pupils across Northamptonshire were invited to put their computer skills to the test and create a game or an app, and they submitted their entries by uploading a two-minute video to YouTube about their design.

Team Sparky from Park Junior School in Wellingborough won the Year 4 to 6 category with their game which challenges players to fix solar panels on the school roof as they degrade over time, while the winner of the Year 9 category was Kettering Buccleuch Academy for their app which tracks household energy consumption.

The winners received a personal Raspberry Pi computer at a special prize-giving ceremony.

The competition forms part of Northamptonshire’s Race To The Top school improvement strategy, which identifies that pupils are currently underperforming in maths, science, technology and engineering.

Scott Turner, Associate Professor in Computing and Immersive Technologies at the University, said: “The creativity and technological know-how of the competition entrants really impressed us. The competition has inspired the young people who took part, and it’s great to see we have so many talented budding coders in the county’s schools.

“Coding promotes problem solving, team-work and analytical thinking – and those who code from an early age will have a real advantage in the future jobs market.”

Cllr Matthew Golby, county council cabinet member for learning, skills and education, said: “The games and apps designed by the pupils who entered our competition were really impressive, and it was great to see them showing such an interest in technology.

“I hope they continue to develop their computer skills and that this competition will inspire other young people to pursue an interest in science and technology.”

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