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CEO of Code.org Wants to Close the Computing Gap Where it Starts

The EdTech race is heating up at the moment as companies aim for profits. However, the bottom line isn't the only thing on CEOs' minds as many of CEOs are concerned with how their products directly effect students. Hadi Partovi, CEO of Code.org penned a piece for the Idaho Statesman offering suggestions on how to close the computing gap where it starts.

Partovi argued that while computer science jobs are high in-demand, there is still a lack of programs at the foundation of students’ education to prepare them or even get them excited for these opportunities.

“Computing jobs make up about two-thirds of all projected new jobs in STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) fields, yet 75 percent of schools don’t offer computer science courses,” according to Partovi.

“In fact, only 8 percent of all STEM graduates study computer science before college.”

His argument even goes beyond the job market for computer science as he stresses the fact that computers are a vital part of everyone’s lives. Partovi said that teaching how computers work, computer science and coding is not happening.

“Not surprisingly, the lack of high school programs is leading to a shortage of computer science students at the college level,” said Partovi in his article.

“Idaho produced just 277 computer science graduates in 2015 — far from the numbers needed to fill the state’s 1,368 open computing jobs. Those jobs carry an average salary of $67,327, compared to the $39,770 average for all jobs in the state. Why are they open? It starts with the missed opportunities in K-12.”

Partovi is advocating a change in the way computer science is approached and his approach could go beyond Idaho schools.

“You can be an advocate for change. Challenge local schools to expand computer science offerings at every grade level, and push districts to allow computer science courses to satisfy core math or science requirements,” said Partovi, as he challenged Idahoans.

Read the full story.

Article by Navindra Persaud, Education World Contributor

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