We’ve been sitting on some exciting news for a few weeks now, and we’re finally able to tell you all about it.
The Div has been selected as a Code.org Professional Learning Partner and will be the designated provider of Code.org programs in Oklahoma!
So what does that mean?
In short, it means that Code.org is providing funding and tools to help us expand access to computer science education in Oklahoma. The Div will be able to offer professional development and full course curriculum to local educators and school districts at no cost to them. Teachers have the opportunity to attend a national training conference in summer 2017, participate in 4 local trainings throughout the school year and join a supportive community of likeminded educators. We’ll be offering curriculum and training for Computer Science Discoveries (grades 7-9) and Computer Science Principles (high school, AP). But we can also make connections for teachers who wish to implement Computer Science Fundamentals in their elementary school classes. You can check out our full media release here.
Computer science drives innovation throughout the US economy, but it remains marginalized throughout K-12 education.
A quick look at computer science in Oklahoma
- Oklahoma currently has nearly 2,000 open computing jobs (2.8 times the average demand rate in Oklahoma).
- The average salary for a computing occupation in OK is $68,598, which is significantly hirer than the average salary in the state ($41,820).
- Only 411 computer science computer science graduates in 2014, only 18% were female
- Only 206 high school students in Oklahoma took the AP Computer Science exam in 2015; only 24% were female; only 26 were Hispanic; only 15 were black; only 7 were Native American.
- Only 25 schools in Oklahoma (8% of OK schools with AP programs) offered the AP computer science course in 2014-2015. There are fewer AP exams taken in computer science than in any other STEM subject area.
The Div does The White House
As part of this partnership, The Div had the opportunity last week to travel to Washington DC for training and to convene and connect with other computer science education advocates. Our Board President Cory Miller, who also founded local technology company iThemes, was invited to speak at an event hosted by The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. He shared with the cohort about why businesses like his are dedicated to supporting, advocating for and funding work in this area.
Professional Development for Computer Science Educators
We’re over the moon excited, because this partnership will allow us to expand our reach exponentially. We’ll continue to offer youth camps forever, because it’s important to provide as much technology access as possible. But we know that when you are able reach 1 teacher, you’re actually touching around 127 students a year. This partnership allows us to impact even more Oklahomans with the life-changing skills that computer science teaches.
Teacher applications open in January. Educators can use the links below to learn more about the specific courses and receive updates about the program, or email any questions to The Div directly at email@example.com.
How you can help
Our Code.org funding is for a short time only. We need champions to help us grow and sustain this important work. Your support has a direct impact on education in Oklahoma, and a direct impact on changing young lives forever. Click the button below to donate now.