Aylesbury company launches coding project for primary school children

“There is a pressing need for more cyber security skills in the UK”
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An Aylesbury based company has launched a coding project to support primary school children in the area.

Today (7 June), Red Helix has announced it is launching a new coding club for primary school children.

Children at the security provider’s club will receive additional exposure to the real world applications of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Marion Stewart CEO at Red HelixMarion Stewart CEO at Red Helix
Marion Stewart CEO at Red Helix

Red Helix has launched the scheme in response to the chronic shortage of cyber skills in the UK, and to encourage more diversity in the sector, with a specific focus on aiding social mobility.

This will be achieved by targeting the program at children from primary schools with higher pupil premium rates, the company states.

Initially the club is being run for Year 5 and 6 students from Elmhurst School in Aylesbury, an academy of the Great Learners Trust, with the intent to further their interest of STEM from an early age. It will run for six weeks over the summer term.

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Participants will create their own, personalised infinity mirrors with a coded control system activating different colours on the LED lights running along the outside of the mirror.

Red Helix believes that by providing children with new learning opportunities and additional insight to the practical applications of STEM, it can help them unlock a new passion – and ultimately provide a long-term boost to the cyber security sector.

“There is a pressing need for more cyber security skills in the UK,” says Marion Stewart, CEO, Red Helix. “As security providers, we have a responsibility to address this, not only now, but looking towards the future as well. Through the coding club, we aim to mitigate the impact of future skills shortages by planting a much-needed seed of inspiration at a younger age – with a focus on greater inclusion from a more diverse range of children and young people.”

Alongside the immediate educational potential of the coding club initiative, there are also aspirations to establish a long-term relationship between Red Helix and Elmhurst School, and to inspire other IT and cyber security companies to do the same. With cyber-crime consistently rising, the need for talent in the industry is growing. More partnerships between IT and cyber security organisations and educational institutes will help foster a new generation of cyber-literate individuals and make important steps towards bolstering the UK’s national cyber defences.

“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to partner with Red Helix in launching this coding club,” adds Dawn Hanwell, STEM leader and teacher at Elmhurst School. “It is great to see a local company taking an interest in our children’s future and providing them with expert knowledge. We can’t wait to see our students getting involved and we believe more schools would benefit from a partnership like this.”

The idea behind the coding club initially came following a visit from Aylesbury’s then mayor, Councillor Tim Dixon.

This led Red Helix to approach Dawn and Christine Sond, both teachers at Elmhurst, and put together a program that would enhance the children’s education by giving them access to expert learnings from a company that has decades of experience in the IT and security industry.

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