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'We need more women' - how children's coding classes could change the future

PUBLISHED: 18:15 20 June 2019 | UPDATED: 18:16 20 June 2019

School children participating in coding competition at the UEA. Picture: Victoria Pertusa

School children participating in coding competition at the UEA. Picture: Victoria Pertusa

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Coding classes for children are encouraging young girls to enter into male-dominated technology industries.

School children participating in coding competition at the UEA. Picture: Victoria PertusaSchool children participating in coding competition at the UEA. Picture: Victoria Pertusa

At the annual Scratch Off competition at the University of East Anglia (UEA) - a day of coding masterclasses for school children - young girls are being particularly nurtured.

Dr Pam Mayhew, the event organiser and senior lecturer at the UEA, said: "We need to capture as many females as possible. We are not providing the industry with a talent pool."

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Ed Perkins, who works at Neontribe and is a judge for the competition, agreed: "Girls need to see themselves in coding and see it as somewhere they might be accepted."

School children participating in coding competition at the UEA. Picture: Victoria PertusaSchool children participating in coding competition at the UEA. Picture: Victoria Pertusa

The ability to code is becoming increasingly important as technology seeps into every career path.

Steve Williams, a part-time Year 1 teacher at Drake Primary School, said: "It sees you through life and opens up a million opportunities."

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