This week is Computer Science Education Week, which President Obama kicked off Monday with an Hour of Code at the White House and related announcements, such as a $20 million philanthropic commitment to train 25,000 new computer science teachers for US schools by fall 2016. Of course, the hour of code is somewhat symbolic — sure, we’ve all got to start somewhere, but learning will require a longer term approach.
That’s why we’re seeing bigger picture attention — including the aforementioned growth of computer-related curricula for students — from the federal government, private business, philanthropic organizations, and schools to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) educations and skills in the US.
While the IT skills shortage debate rages on in the US, many STEM education programs are focusing on learning STEM subjects and developing related skills long before someone enters the workforce. Many of those new computer science teachers will work in elementary schools, for instance. There’s a reason that Code.org’s featured Hour of Code activity during CS Education Week is Frozen-themed — you might have noticed that was a popular Halloween costume choice this year.
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