PROSPER MAGAZINE: DIGITAL EDITION
BLACK COUNTRY INTERNATIONAL
WOLVERHAMPTON BASED SCHOOL OF CODING USES LOCKDOWN TO PIVOT AND FOCUS ON INTERNATIONAL GROWTH
As with many businesses the COVID-19 pandemic hit the School of Coding hard.
With a large proportion of their business being coding clubs in schools, Wolverhampton based School of Coding, saw a sharp fall in their income overnight. The company was also forced to close all its education centres in the UK leaving the company directors with some tough decisions to make on how to adapt and survive this changing situation.
Realising that the COVID-19 pandemic has, for many parents and pupils, turned everyday life upside down.
With schools closed, many parents expressed worry about the situation fearing that their children would fall behind, lose engagement with their studies and miss out on the teaching and the social element that attending school provides.
Along with this, the need for settling into new routines, with the pressure of also working from home, has added further stress to the already stressful situation.
School of Coding decided to step up and help the parents by offering free coding and computer science lessons to families across the world via video link. Lessons included basic coding involving fun, playable games, all the way up to GCSE computer science with sessions being run five times per day, every day.
In the first week, over 2000 families from not just the UK, but the rest of Europe, the USA, Canada, and Israel, signed up and participated in the free sessions.
These classes were not funded and all costs were covered by the company, which was a brave step given their loss of income, but they firmly believed that continuous education, and knowledge in the ever more important field of coding, are vital in the modern age.
Feedback from these sessions, not only from the UK, but also from overseas, has lead School of Coding to review and expand their entire online learning offer, to ensure it is as user friendly and accessible as possible for pupils, parents and teachers alike, no matter where in the world they are.
Working with Jayne Shields, their Black Country based International Trade Adviser at the Department of International Trade they connected with advisers in India, China and the Middle East to gain a better understanding of their markets and needs.
This enabled them to benchmark their offer against other online coding educators and to redefine their target audience overseas and the added value they can provide.
They soon realised that what made them different was the ability to provide complete lesson plans aimed at pupils aged 6 to adult, all geared to follow the British curriculum, including a full iGSCE programme.
Meaning participating schools have full access to ready-made resources, backed up by teacher training and expert support from experienced coding educators from the School of Coding. Development in VR and video-link technology have also enabled access to live classes from anywhere in the world.
By taking a long-term view and using lockdown to refocus, pivot their business model, invest in their e-learning platform and expand their content, School of Coding are well poised for growth at home and overseas.