In a speech before hundreds of parents and educators, Mayor Bill de Blasio yesterday laid out new reforms for New York City public schools. He committed to expanding Advanced Placement classes to every school; ensuring that all students take algebra by 9th grade or earlier, and providing every student with computer science classes in elementary, middle and high schools.
The New York Times reports that at least two other American cities have decided to offer computer science courses to all students. Chicago has pledged to make a computer science a high school graduation requirement by 2018. Also “The San Francisco Board of Education voted in June to offer it from prekindergarten through high school, and to make it mandatory through eighth grade.”
Here is the portion of the mayor’s press release dealing with computer science:
Every student will receive computer science education in elementary, middle, and high school within the next 10 years. Through this commitment, every student will learn the fundamentals of computer science, like coding, robotics and web design. This promotes critical skills like thinking creatively, working as a team, and interacting with technology, as well as technical skills that will power the 21st century economy. The Software Engineering Pilot (SEP) has brought computer science to 2,700 students in 18 middle and high schools across the city during the 2014-15 school year, and the number of computer science programs will be expanded significantly beginning in fall 2016.
- Students reached: By 2025, all 1.1 million students will receive a computer science education in elementary through high schools.
- Cost: $81 million commitment over 10 years. Computer Science for All will be funded through a public-private partnership between the City of New York, CSNYC, Robin Hood Foundation and AOL Charitable Foundation who have committed to a 1:1 match of City funds.
- Full implementation: New classes starting in fall 2016 with full implementation in all grade levels by 2025.