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Computer Science in NYC Schools

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I’ve been teaching and loving Math in middle and high school for almost 10 years, but this current academic year I’m teaching Computer Science and I have never been more excited!

The NYC Department of Education has said that by 2025, every public school student in New York City will learn computer science, making ours the largest school district in the nation to teach this critical subject to all students in all public schools. Through Computer Science for All, NYC public school students will receive meaningful, high-quality Computer Science (CS) education at each school level: elementary, middle, and high school.

The fact that the world’s biggest education department has started to embrace Computer Science perhaps shouldn’t be surprising, but this isn’t just recognition of a useful elective – it’s acknowledgement of it being critical and funding to back up the position.

The Department of Education says, “This initiative speaks to the reality of the world we live in now. From Silicon Alley to Wall Street to the fashion runways, industries all across our city are increasingly relying on new technologies – and are in need of workers with the experience to help them achieve success. Computer science education offers more than job preparation – NYC’s students will learn to think and solve critical problems in a creative way and to understand the technology they use each day.”

The course I’m currently teaching is Advanced Placement (AP) Computer Science Principles and it introduces students to code through dragging and dropping blocks. It’s friendly, fun and a great way to get started with coding. Take a look at the ‘Beauty and Joy of Computing’ curriculum I’m using and the Snap! Programming dashboard (where programs are built with blocks).

A completely new, critical subject, to sit alongside Math, English, Social Studies and Science may feel a little strange but the way the society, culture and the economy is heading I feel as though Computer Science has earned its place on the list if not at the very top.

 

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