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New Computer Science Programs Coming to Schools

July 19, 2018, 2:04 PM HST
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Women in Technology’s STEMworks program, as a regional partner of Code.org’s nationwide network, reports that 48 educators from across the state will be teaching new innovative computer science (CS) curricula in their respective middle and high schools this coming school year.

48 educators from across the state will be teaching new innovative computer science (CS) curricula. Courtesy Photo

Code.org is a nonprofit dedicated to expanding access to computer science and increasing participation by women and underrepresented minorities. It is supported by generous donors including Microsoft, Facebook, the Infosys Foundation, Google, Omidyar Network and many more.

Through WIT’s STEMworks recruitment, local teachers signed on to become part of Code.org’s 2018 Professional Learning Program participating in five-day TeacherCon events in Atlanta and Phoenix this summer. Hawai‘i Island schools include Hilo Intermediate School, Honoka‘a High & Intermediate School, Kohala High School, Kea‘au High School, Konawaena Middle School and Prince Jonah Kalaniana‘ole Elementary & Intermediate School.

By actively immersing themselves in the hands-on CS Discoveries and CS Principles workshops, teachers were introduced to computer science fundamentals, problem-solving and principles, as well as learning approaches in teamwork, communication and computer skills.

“STEMworks is excited to work with educational and industry partners to help ensure every student in Hawai‘i has access to quality computer science education,” Isla Young, WIT Director of STEM Education & Workforce Development, said.

Hawai‘i currently has 1,318 open computing jobs. Courtesy photo

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“Seeing Code.org’s outstanding curriculum being taught in our classrooms soon is especially exciting since Hawai‘i’s DOE recently adopted CSTA computer science standards and Gov. Ige signed the bill HB2607 to advance computer science education in our state,” she said.

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Hawai‘i currently has 1,318 open computing jobs—4.6 times the average demand rate in Hawai‘i. The average salary for a computing occupation in Hawai‘i is $80,734, that is significantly higher than the average salary in the state, which is $49,430.

Middle and high school teachers (grades 6-12) interested in local, summer professional development opportunities featuring the Code.org curricula CS Discoveries and CS Principles are encouraged to sign up on the 2019 Interest List online.

Accepted teachers will join more than 500 educators across the nation in Code.org’s annual week-long TeacherCon, where they will learn the computer science curricula, CS content, pedagogy, and gain confidence in teaching computer science in the classroom. Next year, the 2019 five-day TeacherCon will be held in on O‘ahu at the beginning of June.

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Elementary school teachers (grades K-5) interested in upcoming opportunities to attend local CS Fundamentals training, are encouraged to apply to STEMworks’ interest list online. Once teachers are on the list, they can be to be notified of local workshops as they become available during the 2018-19 school year.

WIT STEMworks is also recruiting teachers in grades K-5 to participate in CS Fundamentals one-day workshops which will be led by Shane Asselstine from Momilani Elementary and/or Shana Brown from King Kaumuali‘i Elementary Schools.

For more information, visit online or contact Manda Tong at [email protected] or (808) 270-6809 or Denissa Andrade at [email protected] or (808) 270-6805.

STEMworks is the flagship STEM program of Women in Technology, a statewide initiative of the Maui Economic Development Board, funded in part by the U.S. Departments of Labor, Education, and Agriculture as a workforce development project.

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