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IT firms called to encourage students to study STEM subjects

Companies could help provide real-world application examples to schools

Businesses are invited to a series of networking events to see how they can help encourage schoolchildren to study science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects and help fill a skills gap in the IT industry.

The free events will be useful to teachers and employers, whether experienced in engaging students with STEM, or looking for guidance and support to begin 'putting the business into STEM', said IT industry association Intellect.

The 12 networking events in May and June, run by educational charity STEMNET, will look at how businesses and schools can connect in order to engage students with STEM. Among the themes will be exploring real-world applications of the subjects, career opportunities and helping pupils to develop the skills required to be successful in business.

At the BETT show in January education minister Michael Gove announced that the existing National Curriculum Programme of Study for ICT would be withdrawn from September 2012, to make way for a "rigorous computer science" curriculum. The results of the consultation are yet to be published.

Meanwhile, the CTO of CA Technologies recently said that the IT should do something about the skills gap, rather than just complain about it.

To register to attend the networking events held at various locations in England, visit the STEMNET website.


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