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District Takes Computer Science Education Expansion to a Vote

District Takes Computer Science Education Expansion to a Vote

San Francisco has voted to expand computer science studies across all grade levels, a move looking to get more students--including women and minorities--interested in the field of computer science.

"At present, only a 'few hundred' San Francisco public school students took the Advanced Placement Computer Science exam in Spring 2014. Of those, just 22 percent were women, and three percent were African American, Latino or Native American," according to Arstechnica.com.

Because no local, state, or national standards exist on computer science education, the San Francisco Board of Education took matters into its own hands and unanimously approved the measure to require computer science in all grade levels of the San Francisco Unified School District.

"'Information technology is now the fastest growing job sector in San Francisco, but too few students currently have access to learn the Computer Science skills that are crucial for such careers,' Board President Emily Murase said in a statement on Wednesday," the article said.

The Board is hoping that by getting students started in computer science as early as preschool, more in the area will develop an interest in the study.

"How exactly will San Francisco’s preschool set get in on the action? SFUSD says they 'will most likely be using blocks to build robots, to introduce the concepts of procedural thinking, cause and effect, decomposition of complex tasks, pattern recognition as well as the ability to notice similarities or common differences, abstraction and algorithm design and the ability to develop a step-by-step strategy for solving a problem,'" the article said.

With the growing demand for employment of computer and information research scientists and the competitive salaries for both, the move is anticipated to best prepare students for the future.

Read the full article here and comment below.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

06/11/2015

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