The Liberals require a major focus on ICT in schools
Left will spend a quarter of a billion on an hour every week on ICT for the 1st to 3rd graders. The Government’s plans must be followed up with money, is the requirement from the Leader of the Liberal Party.
in lieu of the budget negotiations next week, the party therefore puts forward its own initiative package with a price tag of NOK 700 million on digitizing schools. The most important and expensive proposal is an extra hour every week aimed at the youngest schoolchildren on ICT in general and coding specifically.
-We do so because we need a big ICT boost throughout Norway. We need to educate our kids so that they are ready for the digital future, says leader of the Liberal party, Trine Skei Grande, to NTB.
The initiative will appear in the party’s alternative budget, which will be presented at noon on Monday. Budgets negotiations with The Christian Democrats (KrF) and the Government parties, the Conservatives and the Progress Party, are expected to start the day after.
Commitment to teachers
The ICT commitment is closely linked to another promise from the Liberals, namely a proper commitment towards teachers. 150 of the 700 million will be used on continued education of teachers in ICT, social sciences and specialized pedagogic.
Grande is concerned that we all need a basic understanding of how ICT will affect all professions in the future. She believes the government parties have made good strategies for ICT efforts, including in the public sector, but did not prioritize this area adequately in the budgets.
– I have perceived that there are few who oppose this, but the will to prioritize it has not been present. Now we add money in many areas in order to succeed, says Grande.
Additional study seats
In addition to the extra weekly hour in elementary school, these are the most important Liberal efforts towards digitalization:
- 100 million in grants for ICT measures in primary education (1st to 7th grade)
- 57.5 million to 1,000 additional study sets within IT and IT security
- 50 million for trials with programming as a subject
- 50 million towards digitization of the university and college sector
The package deal also includes increased focus on e-learning platforms, strengthening of technology and IT education and increased grants for the digitization of online help under the auspices of the Red Cross.
More to the National Guard
Over the last few days, the Liberals has leaked important issues from its alternative budget.
Among other things, the party plans to spend another NOK 250 million on the Army and National Guard (HV). The Christian Democrats also wish to spend an additional 200 million on HV in 2018. Negotiations in the Parliament are currently underway regarding the Government’s plan for the army, which was recently submitted.
On Wednesday, NTB also reported that the Liberals requires an annual grant of NOK 5 million towards a women’s forum against ‘honour’ culture and social control.
On Friday, the party announced that it has allocated NOK 50 million on Tunisia in its alternative budget. The Arab Spring in 2011 started in Tunisia, which is the country that has fared the best in the wake of the upheavals in a number of Arab countries.
© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today