According to a 2016 presidential report, almost half of the jobs in the U.S. in the next 10-20 years will be related to Artificial Intelligence in which computers make decisions, recognize speech and perform other human tasks. Will students be prepared with the computer science backgrounds they need to really understand AI? Computer science education varies widely across the U.S. with some states lacking well-defined computer science standards and others simply not including computer science as part of graduation requirements.
Fortunately, three states, Arkansas, Idaho and Rhode Island are expanding their computer science education. Arkansas may have one of the best programs in the country. State policy requires computer science to be included in the elementary curriculum, a five-week coding course in middle school and at least one computer science course offered in every public and charter high school. In addition, at least one school district in the state has set up a partnership with working professionals so that high school students can work directly with employees of such big businesses as Tyson, Walmart and NanoMech. To ensure that these programs will succeed the state has offered incentives to teachers to receive computer science endorsements and has offered provisional teaching licenses to experienced computer science professionals to meet the shortage of qualified teachers in this field.
Talk to your EdGate rep to learn more about the computer science standards in our repository.
By: Nancy Rubesch