Brussels, 10 October 2014
Massively expanded EU Code Week
Contact your local coding ambassador for interviews and quotes
Find an event near you on the European Event map
European Code Week 2014 kicks off on 11 October: over 1500 events bringing the digital world to life – across the EU and countries from Norway to Turkey.
The spotlight on coding comes as seven European education ministers have already incorporated compulsory coding into their school curricula, with another five countries offering it as an option in schools.
This is particularly timely, as reports show Europe could soon have one million unfilled jobs because Europeans lack the digital skills to fill them.
A major new industry-led coding platform is also being launched on 14 October to promote learning and teaching of coding, bringing to life the vision of the Grand Coalition for Digital Skills and Jobs.
And there is a new tool kit for kids, adults, parents, teachers and businesses on how to get involved!
Code Week organiser Alja Isakovic, one of 90 coding ambassadors, said: "It's amazing to see so much enthusiasm for the initiative from every corner of Europe! Coding is a fun and creative tool that provides great career opportunities, even for people who don't want to be full-time programmers. With EU Code Week we want to create a spark, so that more people start making every week of the year a Code Week and become better problem solvers".
European Commission Vice-President Neelie Kroes (@NeelieKroesEU), in charge of Digital Agenda says: "Coding is the new literacy – a fundamental set of skills for girls and boys alike. It’s not a boring computer science lesson, it's a way to make all subjects more interesting. So join an event near you and boost your understanding of the digital world.”
European Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou in charge of Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth (@VassiliouEU) says: "I'm very pleased that coding is starting to appear on national curricula in the EU. We need to keep up the momentum. And as we said when we launched Opening Up Education last year – we have to make sure the teachers get enough support too."
What sort of events will take place?
Events are available for all kinds of groups: from beginners to advanced coders, for everyone from job-seekers looking to learn a new skill to robot fans and girl geeks.
Schoolchildren will learn coding for the first time, and companies will offer free classes in their communities.
Coding is for girls and boys, inside and outside schools. We need to break the taboos associated with computer science and IT –especially when it comes to getting parents and teachers involved.
Why should children and others learn to code?
Knowing how to code helps us understand our hyper-connected world and to appreciate what is going on behind the screens. Coding is an example of the digital skills that young people need to become creative and empowered citizens, and to prepare them for jobs of the future.
Which countries have coding on the curriculum?
Several Member States have already started to put coding on their national curricula:
Mandatory: Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Greece, Poland, Portugal, and the UK.
Optional: Denmark, Estonia, Ireland, Italy, and Lithuania.
EU Code Week is an initiative of the Young Advisers to Commission Vice-President Neelie Kroes. The initiative has attracted the support of coding and education movements like CoderDojo and Rails Girls. It is also backed by major tech and IT companies such as Facebook, Microsoft, Rovio, Google, SAP, Oracle and Liberty Global, and is supported by European Schoolnet and the Grand Coalition for Digital Jobs.
Coding is fun with Young Advisors
Learning to code for your future and for Europe with Vice-President Kroes