One of Gibraltar’s two comprehensive schools, Bayside School, has been awarded ‘Best Educator’ for its Cyber Club headed by Steward Harrison, at the 2019 Seriously Security Awards held in London.
The nomination was made by the chief examiner of a cyber security qualification who had witnessed first hand the work done by the club and its partnership with the technology sector. Over the past five years, students have been taught by industry experts, been on work experience within the sector, gained vocational qualifications and worked as interns at various companies.
This year sees the first year of the Gibraltar Cyber Challenge, which will be delivered to all year 7 and 8 students (11 – 13 years of age) at both Bayside and Westside Comprehensive schools. The initiative has been sponsored by the Government of Gibraltar and various private sector companies.
In attendance at the awards with Stewart Harrison was Aaron Baw, one of the first members of the club and CyberCenturion winner in 2015, who now works in the cybersecurity industry in UK.
Minister for Education John Cortes, welcoming the news, said, “I am delighted. This team so deserves it. Stewart and his colleagues from Bayside, together with other involved like Lluis Mora and Richard Fadul, and others from the private sector, have done so much to promote digital technology in our young people. In congratulating them I am looking forward at all the other great things they will achieve in our new facilities and with the new opportunities coming up both in the Comprehensives and the Gibraltar College.”
In April 2019, Mr Harrison launched The Duke of York Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award (iDEA), an international programme aiming to help address the digital skills gap. The programme provides free digital skills education ranging from GDPR, Blockchain, Coding and Animation. The Bayside Cyber Club runs every Wednesday evening at the school and it is open to any student between the ages of 12 – 18. The overarching goal of iDEA is to support the development and accreditation of digital skills, allowing individuals more opportunities to become economically active in an increasingly technologically-driven employment market.
There are now plans to launch Gibraltar’s Cyber Challenge Rock Defenders to both comprehensive schools aimed at ages 12 – 14 to help raise the profile of ICT within the schools.