Are you ready to code?
Schools in New York City and across the country are celebrating Computer Science Education Week beginning Monday, December 9, with a slew of activities including hackathons, parent visits to computer science classrooms, and the wildly popular Hour of Code (external link).
The DOE believes that computer science education is an essential way to prepare students for the jobs of today and tomorrow. That is why we are especially proud to participate in this tenth annual event. And why we offer more computer science programming than any school district in the nation.
Last school year, more than 1,900 teachers across 800 schools provided high-quality computer science education through our Computer Science for All initiative (external link) (Learn more about our CS teachers, Ross Berman and Carolina Restrepo). More than 160,000 students of all grade levels have taken computer science.
More than 400 schools are participating in this year’s Computer Science Education Week. Students and families are also invited to take a 60-minute tutorial called an Hour of Code (external link), tailored to grade level, to learn what computer science is all about. For example, one activity for younger students is called “Star Wars: Building a Galaxy with Code (external link).“
Computer science teaches students how to problem-solve, think critically, and work as part of a team. It also helps prepare students for a broad range of college and career possibilities that are in high demand in today’s labor market.
In the process, we are helping to ensure that our City’s workforce reflects the diversity of our student population so that technical fields will no longer under-represent young women and students of color.
Already Computer Science for All has been producing concrete results:
- In 2018, over 5,000 NYC students took an Advanced Placement computer science exam – a 400 percent increase from the year before.
- By wide margins, NYC had a higher percentage of female, black, and Latino students taking an AP Computer Science exam compared to the nation as a whole.
- This year, 142 middle and high schools will participate in the City’s Hack League competition (external link), which challenges students to apply computer science concepts and practices to solve real-world problems. That’s up from 122 last year.
Computer science encourages students to come up with practical solutions for everyday issues. For example, last year’s Hack League winners developed computer apps that provided real-time data about MTA bus lines, notified landlords when tenants became exposed to very high or low apartment temperatures, and provided bilingual alerts to keep students safe and informed in school.
Computer Science for All’s exciting progress is made possible by the generous support of a wide-range of private funders. With their partnership, we will bring high-quality computer science education to every public school student, K-12, by 2025.