The Digital Readiness Academy (DRA) is a new project led by the British Council and sponsored by HSBC.  It aims to empower local teachers and students with digital literacy, financial literacy and core skills for their future planning and resilience in a post-Covid-19 and tech-focused world. In its pilot year, the programme will take place in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam. Upon completion of the programme, teachers will receive a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) certificate issued by the British Council and endorsed by the Micro:bit Educational Foundation. The programme consists of a two-day online training and 35 sets of micro:bit starter kits will be gifted to each participating school.


The programme aims to:

· equip teachers with digital literacy skills to support learning in the classroom

· provide students with the skills to plan, budget, and enhance their future

· support students to develop online learning capabilities

· develop a suite of micro:bit teaching and learning resources for future use


The programme includes:

1. Teacher/Student Training

Teachers will receive a two-day online training that focuses on integrating micro:bit-enabled digital activities across the curriculum to support the following three pillars of student development:

· Core/soft skills, particularly around creativity, communication, collaboration and critical thinking

· Financial literacy and planning

· Links to the workplace via exposure to industry context/networks and prototyping industry solutions

Throughout the training, teachers will be introduced to the processes and resources for developing integrated curricula, learning materials and student activities. 

2. British Council-branded Code Clubs: Student Service Learning

A British Council-branded Code Club will be set up at each participating school. It will be led by teachers as facilitators and run by student volunteers who act as peer tutors. These students will have the title ‘Digital Readiness Academy Ambassadors’. With the Code Club activities that are developed available online as an open resource, each Code Club will run sessions on how to code simple micro:bit tasks aimed to develop soft skills and focused on different themes.

3. Student Hackathon

Towards the end of the pilot year, the academy will host a student hackathon involving all participating schools to celebrate how the world could be improved through creativity, design thinking and innovation using the micro:bit as a tool to respond to real-world challenges.

Core Values:

Playful: play nurtures and develops the breadth of skills that enable us to fulfil our potential.

Interdisciplinary: these events bring multiple subject disciplines together. For example, technology could fuse with engineering and the arts could blend with computer science.

Skills development: activities will enable participants to learn new tangible (e.g. coding) and non-tangible (e.g. problem solving) skills.

For social good: the events, by their very nature, are designed to have positive social impact and it is important to demonstrate how and why.


Who can participate in the programme?

Priority will be given to schools that:

· Are public, government-funded

· Support students from low to medium income bracket families

· Have teacher training needs in core skills and financial literacy

· Have teacher training needs in digital literacy, ICT or STEM

· Can commit to the entirety of the pilot activity scope


How will students, teachers and schools benefit from the programme?

· Teachers will develop proficiency and confidence in digital literary

· Students will gain access to digital learning and demonstrate tech skills

· Teachers and students will be motivated to use online learning within and beyond the classroom

· Schools will adopt digital transformation in their curricula

 · Communities of practice will be established for sustainable development on digital learning and capacity building through collaborative relationships.



 DRA Student Hackathon 2021

DRA Hackathon is a micro:bit challenge led by British Council, co-created by Micro:bit Educational Foundation and sponsored by HSBC. The aim is to deliver immersive and engaging events to inspire students to get creative and experience the power of learning with micro:bit. Students with the winning ideas will be awarded a gift voucher prize. There will be four regional winners from Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Vietnam.

Students from our project schools are welcome to enter our challenge with their ideas to achieve the Global Goals Good Health & Well-being & Climate Action. Participating schools can send up to 2 teams of 3-5 students (S1-S3) to compete. The hackathons will be hosted online if the situation of Covid-19 continues to evolve.

Judging Criteria

  1. Ambition
  2. Innovation & tech use
  3. Implementation
  4. Impact
  5. Pitch

DRA Hackathon in Hong Kong 

On 23rd July, the first-ever DRA Hackathon took place face-to-face in Hong Kong, after more than three months of blended learning by students.  The hackathon brought together eight local project schools, 41 students teaming up together to compete and build solutions to address the challenges for good health and well-being and climate action, applying and amplifying their future skills on problem solving, critical thinking, collaboration, communication, and creativity.  




Project Timeline

Project Starts

September 2020

School Recruitment and Briefings

October 2020 – February 2021

Lesson Resources Development

December 2020 – March 2021

Steering Committee First Meeting 

February 2021

Master Training Session

February – March 2021

Project Teacher Training Session

March – May 2021

Setup code club at local schools

March – May 2021

Student Hackathon 

June – July 2021

Steering Committee First Meeting 

July 2021

 Evaluation & Feedback

 July 2021

For any enquiries of this programme, please contact for more information.