‘Focus On Stem Subjects’ Needed

The Northern Ireland economy will continue to fall behind the rest of the world until more focus is put into science, technology, engineering and maths, according to an education charity.

Jim Stewart, chairman of Sentinus, which encourages participation in the so-called Stem subjects, said the lack of support meant employers’ needs were “barely” being met.

He was speaking as hundreds of students gathered for the charity’s Young Innovators Exhibition at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast.

“The presence of the G8 countries here today brings into sharp focus the economic standards that Northern Ireland must aspire to and that is particularly apparent in their commitment to the promotion of science, technology, engineering and maths subjects in their schools,” he said.

“Within Northern Ireland we have unfortunately been falling behind in this global race and the current curriculum commitment to the delivery of Stem subjects in our schools fall far short of what is needed to compete with the strongest economies in the world.

“In many primary schools Stem subjects are barely given lip service while in secondary schools there is no requirement for students to take Stem subjects, with the exception of maths, at GCSE level.

“If we are to compete with the best in the world we must inspire and enthuse more young people, like those attending the Young Innovators event today, to see the importance of Stem subjects.”

Source: irishnews.com