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Australian kids could soon learn coding in every school

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Information Age

Labor outlines long-term vision for the digital age.

The digital economy might have won out in short-term spending measures in Budget 2015.

But when it comes to dealing with the longer-term challenges posed by the "digital age" - including meeting future skills demands - opposition leader Bill Shorten has marked the Government's Budget 2015 as a "fail".

"The truth is the 2015 Budget is silent on the big picture, the next decade, the long run," Shorten said in his budget reply speech.

"I want to create jobs and grow the economy."

In an address that had more in common with an election campaign launch than a budget reply, Shorten unveiled a series of measures that bring science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to the forefront of policy thinking - and which Labor would pursue should it return to power.

"New jobs of the future require new skills," Shorten said.

"Designing skills, coding skills – building, refining, adapting and servicing the machines and supply chains of a new age."

Shorten said that "three out of every four" of the fastest growing occupations in Australia required STEM skills, and yet the number of students attaining those skills remained low.

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