I belong to this organisation:
which is mainly concerned with teaching programming at schools in England and Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
[Perhaps it is useful to point out that Scotland has a different educational system to England and Wales.]
I, also, teach EFL to a large number of children who have shown me and talked about what they are doing in terms of programming at schools in Bulgaria. The content of school programming courses here (Bulgaria) differ little from those on the British Isles, but the teaching methods are far more didactic.
And over the last 3 years that I have tried pushing LiveCode I have come to some not-very-startling conclusions:
1. All teaching to do with computers is 100% exam driven, & the examination boards dictate which programming languages educators should use for the simple reason that most of their examiners are only able to assess programs written in an extremely limited number of languages.
2. Most teachers, having got themselves "comfortably situated" with one or two programming languages
(which generally coincide with those forced on them by the exam boards, big surprise) have no motivation to invest time and effort in learning another programming language (whether it be LiveCode or other).
3. This charmed circle of programming languages is incredibly difficult to break into, not because the programming languages inwith the charmed circle have any particular virtue over those outwith the circle, but just because they are already there.
To understand this it might be useful to ask the following questions:
3.1. Why did the VHS videotape "win" the race over the Betamax format when the Betamax format was superior?
3.2. Why do the vast majority of people deploy versions of the Windows OS on their computers when Windows is demonstrably extremely inefficient in terms of resource use when compared with Linux varieties?
Over the last few years I have developed a programme that gets children into computer programming quickly and painlessly; I start with BBC BASIC on BBC Micro emulators, and then transition to LiveCode.
I can also give a 30 minute talk about how this works, and how, in a matter of about 12 - 15 contact hours I can get children doing things that most schools seem to take a year to achieve.
The standard response to my talk is "but they need to learn C++", "they need Visual Basic", "they need Java (script)"; and for why? Because, supposedly, that's what the market demands, and in reality, because of #1 and #2 above.
I do believe that the only way to get a huge uptake in LiveCode for education would be for LiveCode itself to invest vast sums in residential 3-4 day courses for teachers, and when/if a large number of teachers could see its benefits they would bring force to bear on the examination boards.
Now, as we all know, the good people at LiveCode have to put bread and cheese in their fridges, as well as keeping their shareholders happy, and whether renting some mansion near Edinburgh for all expenses paid, bed, grub, entertainment and LiveCode programming instruction half-terms for bunches of teachers would do when the auditors and/or financial experts looked at things I just don't know.
CERTAINLY before anything like the above could be entertained someone has to get their clutches on some past papers and work through just exactly what they would have to get teachers on that sort of course doing to make it make any pedagogical sense at all.
I abhor all types of exams (not that that has stopped me from taking lots and lots of the blasted things), and would far rather live in a society that did not depend on them and their results (although there is quite a loud voice in my head asking whether a society without some form of assessment would manage to function in any way except very badly), but recognise that that is the way the world works, and, like it or not, teaching towards an exam syllabus (as opposed to teaching a subject and then because the pupils' understanding is marvellous they just romp through the exam) is a reality, and a reality that seems to inform 99% of all education at the moment right across Europe (except, perhaps, in Finland).