Monday, February 6, 2017
In Israel, teaching kids cyber skills is a national mission
BEIT SHEMESH (AP) — In some Israeli schools, fourth-graders learn computer programming while gifted 10th-graders take after-school classes in encryption tactics, coding and how to stop malicious hacking. The country even has two new kindergartens that teach computer skills and robotics.
The training programs — something of a boot camp for cyber defense — are part of Israel’s quest to become a world leader in cybersecurity and cyber technology by placing its hopes in the country’s youth.
To that end, Israel announced this week the establishment of a national center for cyber education, meant to increase the talent pool for military intelligence units and prepare children for eventual careers in defense agencies, the high-tech industry and academia.
“You students need to strengthen us with your curiosity,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told an Israeli cyber technologies expo, sitting next to high school students in a training program overseen by the defense establishment. “Your years in the security services will be golden years for the security of the nation.”