Steve, lead character in Minecraft, on a horse

Microsoft and London Grid for Learning launch Minecraft certification in schools

Microsoft and London Grid for Learning (LGfL) have announced Minecraft Education London, which will see students learn coding and gain an industry-recognised certification in the block-building game.

The programme, provided by Microsoft partner Prodigy Learning, will be rolled out to thousands of pupils in 100 primary, secondary and special schools across the capital.

The “Minecraft Education London” programme was officially launched at the LGfL Annual Conference in London on April 30.

Minecraft: Education Edition is a game-based learning platform designed for education that offers teachers a way to engage students using Minecraft. It is a safe open-world game that promotes creativity, collaboration, and problem-solving, and is used by millions of educators and students in 115 countries across the world.

Deirdre Quarnstrom, Global Lead for Minecraft for Education, said: “I know that with tools like Minecraft in London schools, we can inspire the next generation of creators, leaders and innovators.

“When I see how people are already embracing Minecraft in the classroom around the world, I feel a real sense of urgency to put these tools in the hands of educators and students. We know it’s engaging, we know it’s working, we know it’s reaching both boys and girls and will transform learning across the capital.”

Under the plan, pupils will use Code Builder in Minecraft: Education Edition to develop their skills in coding and science, technology engineering and maths (STEM). In a world-first, they will also be able to take recognised certifications in Minecraft at key stage 2 and 3 level, giving young people in London a unique way to show they understand these subjects and progression to higher level qualifications.

Under the partnership, teachers will receive training on how to use Minecraft in the classroom, receiving support from the Global Minecraft Mentors programme. School leaders will also get the chance to become Minecraft Certified Educators so they can train other teachers and share best practice in a London-wide community.

LGfL represents more than 3,000 schools and local authorities in London, providing broadband, cloud and network services and resources to support thousands of young people in the capital’s schools each year.

John Jackson, Chief Executive at LGfL, said: “Minecraft is a wonderful learning platform that will motivate and excite both children and teachers. UK education needs a digital booster to drive up standards and this is certainly a big one.

“LGfL is proud to stand alongside Microsoft and do its bit to incubate and accelerate cloud innovation that will put teaching and learning very firmly in the 21st century. LGfL’s core mission is to advance education and Minecraft certainly achieves that.”