Teaching skills, building confidence
He and his ex-student co-founder ran a trial week, after which 80% of the attendees went into a job in coding or related fields – so Rolfe decided
“Yes, coding and technology are important for the future generation – but what about those people who are adults who think they’ve missed out?” said Rolfe.
“We try and tease them into this digital world, build their confidence, give them some skills and then if they want to know more that’s great; if they don’t want to know more, that’s fine too.”
The scheme has attracted a lot of support from teachers, many of whom feel they have not received the training they need. “The children are running away with their learning,” leaving parents and teachers “disenfranchised” as they fail to keep up, said Rolfe.
He said the number and variety of people taking part in the week surprised him. The mix included teachers, parents, the unemployed and business managers.
“In the past, business leaders have felt embarrassed to ask questions with regards to digital,” Rolfe said.
He said the lack of digital skills higher up in organisations often leads to business leaders opting for outsourcing contracts.
“If they don’t know anything about digital or coding or technology, or analytics or big data, then they’re going to miss opportunities in the global economy,” Rolfe said.