Another go at the DfE

In March 24, UCDx wrote again to the Secretary of  State for Education, Gillian Keegan, about the benefits of UCD as new digital infrastructure for the sector. We emphasised the potential of UCD as new ‘wiring’ for education, enabling learmers to gather their own digital learning and qualification records from all kinds of learning providers, and then show the result to whomsoever the wish: to an adviser – either human or a (well-regulated) AI –  when wondering what comes next, or to an employer when applying for a new job.

We also mentioned that UCD improves inclusion by giving young people digital evidence –  such as qualifications, and ‘vouches’ from learning providers – that they can show to an identity proofing provider, either commercial or government, as  evidence of the use of a claimed identity over time in society. This well help those who lack sufficient conventional evidence  – usually a passport or a driving licence, and a credit recor – obtain a digital identity at a useful level of confidence.

The reply came not from Gillian Keegan, but from her colleague Damian Hinds, the minister of state for schools. His position had barely changed from that stated in a letter in 2019, five years previously. To paraphrase “DfE is still evaluating the way forward in this field, and has not made yet up its mind; however, its approach is fully aligned with that of DSIT and GDS”.

Which is a little like saying that  a random squiggle is fully aligned with a black balloon in a dark room behind blackout curtains. Or that the wilfully unhelpful take comfort from agreement with their own kind. Ah well. Maybe next time.