One of the earliest corporate efforts to get computers into schools was Apple’s “Kids Can’t Wait” program in 1982. Apple co-founder Steve Jobs personally lobbied Congress to pass the Computer Equipment Contribution Act, which would have allowed companies that donated computers to schools, libraries and museums to deduct the equipment’s value from their corporate income tax bills. While his efforts in Washington failed, he succeeded in his home state of California, where companies could claim a tax credit for 25 percent of the value of computer donations.
Code.org, the non-profit organization that aims to increase access to computer science education, has raised $12 million in philanthropic funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Infosys Foundation USA and PricewaterhouseCoopers. The announcement came as part of a Computer Science Education Week kickoff event in San Mateo. Meanwhile, eight states, 76 school districts and 102 organizations nationwide made pledges to expand access to computer science education to millions of students.
Earlier this year, it became the ninth state to adopt computer science standards. Since then, there’s been a concerted effort from state agencies, partner organizations and school districts to integrate coding into the curriculum, according to Janice Mertes, assistant director for instructional media and technology at the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.
Computer science is the second highest paid college degree, yet the majority of schools in the United States don’t teach computer science and only 40 percent of schools teach computer programming. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, with 71 percent of all new science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) jobs in computing, and only 8 percent of STEM graduates in computer science, the STEM problem is in computer science.
December 4th thru December 10th is Computer Science Education Week. Computer Science Education Week (CSEdWeek) is an annual program dedicated to inspiring K-12 students to take interest in computer science. Originally conceived by the Computing in the Core coalition, Code.org® organizes CSEdWeek as a grassroots campaign supported by 350 partners and 100,000 educators worldwide. CSEdWeek is held in recognition of the birthday of computing pioneer Admiral Grace Murray Hopper (December 9, 1906).
As educators and leaders alike seek to close the diversity gap in the tech industry, the importance of expanding computer science education to students from all backgrounds has become integral. In an effort to do this, Google and the American Library Association teamed up to launch the Libraries Ready to Code initiative to help libraries establish programs that will teach students computer science and computational thinking skills.
More high school students around the U.S. took college computer science courses last year than ever before, but in what states are they more likely to take advanced coding classes? Rates of adoption vary heavily state to state. Maryland and Rhode Island rank the highest, according to new 2016-2017 school year data from the College Board collected by Code.org, an advocacy group that’s been pushing for more computer science in schools.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan on Thursday announced an initiative promoting computer science and technology education, emphasizing gender and minority equity in the STEM field. Hogan's "ACCESS" initiative -- or Achieving Computer science Collaborations for Employing Students Statewide -- is an education and workforce development plan that includes $5 million in additional funding as well as new legislation to establish computer-science standards for K-12 education statewide.
As K-12 schools attempt to close the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills gap, federal support for such programs is key. Under President Obama, there was Computer Science for All, an initiative designed to give schools support and funding to provide opportunities for underrepresented students.
Every dollar devoted to computer science education should be spent on professional development for teachers, said Hadi Partovi, the founder and CEO of Code.org. That includes “100 percent,” he said, of the $200 million the Trump administration has directed the U.S. Department of Education to spend on STEM and computer science programs each year.