Employers support school IT mentoring scheme


Major technology employers are piloting a mentoring scheme to support ICT teachers in secondary schools across the UK, in an effort to tackle the ongoing skills shortage.

Companies including HP, IBM, Sopra, Unilever and National Grid are leading the nationwide mentoring scheme, which connects tech professionals with schools in their local area.

The scheme aims to enhance the student and teacher experience by bringing real-world industry examples and expertise into the ICT classroom. The mentors work together with teachers to help inspire young people about topics ranging from coding to tech careers.

Pupils also receive guidance about the mix of skills that tech employers are looking for in new recruits, including soft skills and business behaviour.

So far, the scheme - which is overseen by skills body e-skills UK - has proved very popular, with an average application rate of three schools to every mentor.

To accommodate the high interest, remote mentoring has also been available via Skype, video conferencing and FaceTime technologies. Both teachers and pupils have reported benefits from closer links to the tech industry.

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