'STEM' is the way forward says Committee

Synopsis: The Committee for Education is calling for more pupils to get involved in the STEM subjects in schools – those are Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics subjects.

Session: 2012/2013

Date: 16 January 2013

Reference: EDUC 05/12/13

The Committee for Education is calling for more pupils to get involved in the STEM subjects in schools – those are Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics subjects.  This follows the exemplary performance by local schools which participated in the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition.

Committee Chairperson, Mervyn Storey MLA said: “STEM skills are essential for a thriving economy.  They are naturally associated with research and development, a crucial factor for developing a knowledge-based economy.  It is therefore vital that we do all that we can to encourage our young people to take an interest in these subjects.

“The performance by Northern Ireland schools in the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition this year was absolutely first rate and demonstrates the talent that exists here. The science projects varied from the very practical, such as improvements to medicinal safety and help for farmers in developing countries to harvest seeds; to the more theoretical, such as a study of the properties of acrylic glitter in balls of liquid.  All of the young people involved were enthusiastic and knowledgeable and represented their schools very ably.  All of the participating schools should be very proud of their pupils’ achievements.”

He concluded: “Northern Ireland has a rich history of scientific and engineering endeavours.  The Department of Education should be exploring ways of making this known and doing more to encourage our young people to get involved with STEM subjects”

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