Paddy Mackey, Western Education and Library Board (WELB) Senior Education Officer and Acting Director of C2k, said: “Over the past decade the NewsDesk has proved to be a very popular resource for schools to engage young people in local, national and international topical issues.. The new C2k NewsDesk builds on this success while introducing a more child friendly interface. I encourage schools to use the NewsDesk and ‘get reading, get writing and get reporting!’”
NewsDesk features include a Newsbank where pupils can read and comment on articles via a popular daily Vote section. Content includes News in Pictures; curriculum study Fact Files; and a new Puzzle and Competition page. It also includes News in Video where the latest NewsDesk and neelb.tv programmes can be viewed.
The School Reporter feature allows pupils to write their own press releases on curriculum, current affairs or news topics and submit to the site editor for upload onto the site. Each article has a podcast recording, enabling pupils to listen as well as read, before undertaking the research, writing and discussion activities which accompany news stories.
Ed Brown, Managing Director of Capita Managed IT Solutions, said: “The new version of the software will help to drive better understanding of current affairs and help to increase literacy standards across Northern Ireland.”
He added: “Provided as part of the Education Network Northern Ireland ICT Cloud Services Contract between Capita and C2k, all students will now have 24/7 access to important news stories, videos and podcasts. The new Irish language service will mean we can reach more pupils than ever before in Irish medium schools.”
Guests at both launches enjoyed a promotional video created by neelb.tv (the North Eastern Education and Library Board’s educational television service) which highlighted the benefits of the new service.