“They knew what was coming and tried to present it as a government initiative rather than a response [to what we found],” says Steve Furber, a computer science professor at Manchester University who led the Royal Society’s review.
His report made for damning reading. It revealed that just 35 per cent of ICT teachers were specialists, compared with 74 and 80 per cent of maths and English teachers respectively. “We heard from young people that they often knew more than the teacher giving the lesson,” the report’s authors said. “Action is needed not only on the curriculum itself, but also to recruit and train many more inspiring teachers to reinvigorate pupils’ enthusiasm for and interest in computing.”