Borders schools iPad rollout leads to future careers fair –

The iPads were given to secondary pupils in the Borders in 2019
At a glance
The Inspire Learning project launched in the Borders in 2019 with all secondary pupils given their own iPad
It has since been extended to children in primaries six and seven
An Inspire Learning festival this year included a "careers of the future" fair
Education chiefs in the Borders have taken their iPad roll-out in schools to a new level with a careers fair of the future.
Universities, colleges and many technology employers provided workshops and demonstrations on how the jobs market will look in years to come.
Joining the pupils in Kelso was the recently appointed interim chief executive of Education Scotland, Gillian Hamilton.
She said: "It is a joy to see the young people learning about what the future for them holds."
The fair hoped to give pupils an idea of what their careers could be after school
Pupils were given hands-on experience of creating augmented reality, exploring space engineering, and powering up green-energy vehicles.
They were also provided with talks and demonstrations on robotics, data sciences and ground-breaking animation.
Ms Hamilton added: "The festival is great fun, but it is also really important in giving pupils an idea of where the careers will be after they leave school."
The Inspire Learning programme was launched in the Scottish Borders in 2019 with all secondary pupils and teachers being given their own iPad.
The £16m scheme was rolled out to primary six and seven pupils during the pandemic.
And the inaugural Inspire Learning festival was staged in Kelso last year with an aim of introducing the primary pupils to the benefits of using iPad technology in their learning.
The Inspire Learning festival was held in Kelso
This year, the event was expanded to include a careers of the future fair for all S2 students.
Education councillor Leagh Douglas said: "The Inspire Learning programme has evolved and will continue to evolve.
"Today we are focusing on the opportunities that technology will bring when these 14-year-old pupils leave school.
"We have experts in many fields and this will give them food for thought when it comes to considering higher or further education, or employment careers."
Although most of the fair concentrated on science and computing, demonstrations also included the use of technology in social care and mechanics.
Paul Graham, who is an Inspire Learning development officer, said: "We want to show our young people how engrained technology is in our worlds right now.
"And we also want to show them where careers of the future will be – data science is already one of the biggest employment sectors with demand growing all the time.
"This is about transforming their learning into career opportunities."
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