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Scottish strategy for STEM announced

The Scottish government has published it plans for the future of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) for consultation.

Minister for Further and Higher Education and Science, Shirley-Anne Somerville, officially launched the consultation document during a visit to Cargenbridge Primary School in Dumfries.

The strategy outlines future plans for the subjects, which for the first time, co-ordinates all of the work already underway to promote STEM skills across all age ranges and settings in one strategy.

The government are seeking views from those interested in promoting STEM. Education providers, employers and parents will be consulted and asked for their opinion on how STEM skills and education could be improved and developed.

Ms Somerville commented: “STEM knowledge and capability doesn’t just provide significant career opportunities for individuals, it ignites a passion for learning that helps our young people to develop the skills and confidence they need to succeed in whatever field they choose.

“The draft strategy published today sets out the steps we believe must be taken to improve current levels of enthusiasm for STEM subjects and encourage uptake of the specialist skills necessary to work in the ever-increasing STEM sectors of the economy.”

The Minister said that the strategy would “enhance opportunities” for adults and demands of the labour market would be taken into account, with work also done to reduce gender gaps and improve attainment.

Professor Sheila Rowan, Chief Scientific Adviser for Scotland said: “Knowledge of STEM can make a huge difference to numeracy and digital skills. These are fundamental life skills that are increasingly important in today’s economy.”

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