Educating our youth to shape the look of our future

Your correspondent Melvin Rutter gives the impression that Designers into Schools Week is intended to ‘encourage young people to follow design as a career’ (Letters, DW 9 May). This is simply not the c


We want to put practising designers into classrooms to provide young people with an inspirational link between Design and Technology as a curriculum subject, and design as an important creative force which shapes our everyday experiences.

In other words, to make pupils aware that design is no dry academic subject but an exciting way of thinking with practical outputs which impact on virtually every aspect of our lives.

Only a small minority of young people who study design and technology at school will ever contemplate a career as a designer. Designers into Schools Week is intended to bring the subject alive for a much wider range of pupils.

The deeper understanding that designers in classrooms can help to instil will be carried into a huge range of professions and occupations in years to come.

Designers into Schools Week represents an opportunity to invest future movers and shakers with a deeper appreciation of the value of design. It’s a long term investment with potential benefits for the entire design industry.

Putting pupils in touch with the realities of design – including the fiercely competitive jobs market – is what our initiative is about. Keeping designers out of schools, as your correspondent suggests, is tantamount to suggesting that children should be kept in ignorance about what goes on in the real world.

Hilary Cottam

Learning and public services director

Design Council

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