Premiers Coding Challenge gets the Sir Humphrey treatment

I suppose it was ridiculously optimistic to expect a straight answer to the suggestion that there should be a Premier’s Coding Challenge.

I’ve now received a response from the Premier, sort of. I say ‘sort of’ because what I’ve received is a bit of paper that doesn’t actually say anything, but leaves you with the amorphous impression that it might be indicating ‘no’.

James Hacker: Will you give me a straight answer to a straight question?
Sir Humphrey Appleby: Oh, well, Minister, as long as you are not asking me to resort to crude generalisations and vulgar simplifications such as a simple yes or no, I shall do my utmost to oblige.

Can you imagine a similar response to a suggestion about the Premier’s Reading or Sporting Challenge: “Er thanks, but we already have a couple of schools that do this sort of thing…”

At best the response is a ‘no’ without any sort of reasoning behind it. At worst it indicates a lack of understanding of what coding is, other than that ‘it must fit under the umbrella of this STEM thing that we’ve got some schools doing…’. In reality of course, it’s a standard political response.

I honestly wasn’t expecting this to go anywhere quickly, but I was hoping for at least some sort of engagement.

Time for a re-think and a new approach. Suggestions welcomed.

One thought on “Premiers Coding Challenge gets the Sir Humphrey treatment

  • October 9, 2017 at 9:54 am

    A few years ago I was on a similar path but with financial literacy rather than STEM. We looked to get the financial planning and accounting industry bodies on board and come up with a program similar to the ICAS tests. Similar to your response back regarding STEM it wasn’t embraced. The only upside is that there will be more jobs choice and better wages for those kids that choose to pursue STEM. Unless the teachers at the school have a particular interest in the area it will be up to the kids to make there own way.


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