Students and staff at Dunoon Grammar celebrate the news that the school has become Scotland’s very first digital school.
As the Digital Schoolhouse (DSH), Dunoon Grammar, in collaboration with Nintendo UK, will use game-based learning to engage the next generation of learners and teachers with the computer science curriculum.
The Digital Schoolhouse initiative is implemented by the UK gaming industry trade body Ukie and is supported by the creative digital industries and government. Sponsors include digital heavyweights including PlayStation®, SEGA, Ubisoft and Outright Games.
Dunoon Grammar joins 50 existing digital schools located across the world working with a growing network of local primary and secondary teachers to deliver a free creative and transdisciplinary computer workshop using game-based learning.
In the 2021-2022 academic year, Ukie hopes to support 30,000 learners and 3,500 teachers through this initiative. This provision supports the National Curriculum’s computer science curriculum in a way that leaves students and teachers feeling inspired and involved in computing and the creative digital industries at large.
The workshops, aimed at local primary schools, put theory into practice and help teachers integrate digital school methods into their own lessons, with ongoing personalized support and continuing professional development (CPD). Backed by evidence-based research and combined with groundbreaking vocational training, the program successfully bridges the gap between academia and industry, to ensure that students are well equipped for the future digital economy.
This recognition is the latest in a long list of business and IT related accolades for Dunoon Grammar, which includes earning the Apps for Good UK School of the Year award, becoming the first Scottish school to receive the JA European Entrepreneurial Award and Scotland’s first showcase school at World Education Week.
Councilor Yvonne McNeilly, Education Policy Officer at Argyll and Bute Council, said: “Just when you think they’ve peaked, Dunoon Grammar is doing it again. To say I’m proud is an understatement.
“Dunoon is truly leading the way in digital learning, and that is due to the hard work, commitment and dedication of students and teachers, as well as the support of our parents and guardians.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the importance of digital connectivity, so it’s great to see Dunoon Grammar promoting learning opportunities that help capitalize on this now and in the future. Congratulations to everyone involved. You never cease to amaze me. “
David Mitchell, Principal Professor at Dunoon, said: “This is fantastic news for our entire school community. We are delighted to be able to offer these rich learning opportunities to young people in our partner primary schools and beyond. In doing so, we hope to help colleagues in our primary schools to further enrich their knowledge of the Computer Science offer of the Excellence Program and to further strengthen our P7 transition activities ”.
Paul Gallanagh, who will be the lead teacher for the initiative at Dunoon Grammar, added: “I would like to thank Ukie and her associate supporters for welcoming Dunoon Grammar School as a digital school. It is a great honor for our school and we look forward to expanding our own skills and knowledge by participating in this pioneering program. We will be meeting with local elementary school principals soon to plan how to maximize this experience for their youth.
Shahneila Saeed, Education Manager, Ukie and Director of Digital Schoolhouse, said: “We are delighted that Dunoon Grammar School is joining the Digital Schoolhouse program, which allows us to support Scottish students for the very first time. Having a visionary school like Dunoon Grammar is an ideal creative collaboration and we look forward to bringing our play-based learning approach to Scotland.
For more information on Digital Schoolhouse and Ukie:
• Digital Schoolhouse website: digitalschoolhouse.org.uk
• Digital school on Twitter: @DigSchoolhouse
• Digital school on Facebook: / DigiSchoolhouse
• Ukie website: ukie.org.uk