Written by: Brianna Milano
Coding has been a controversial topic in the education system, but that’s what Code.org is trying to fix. They believe that that is should be something that every school wants to implement.
According to Code.org, Code.org is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to expanding access to computer science schools.
The company also wants to increase the participation by women and underrepresented minorities.
Cenk Erdil of the School of Computer Science and Engineering and Darcy Ronan of Sacred Heart University’s Isabelle Farrington School of Education are co-directors of this initiative.
“The Code.org program is built to give users early success, that gives students the confidence to want to do more,” Ronan said.
Code.org provides the leading curriculum for K-12 computer science in the largest school districts in the United States and the website also organizes the Hour of Code campaign.
“The Hour of Code initiative is where Code.org gained national prominence,” said Ronan.
According to HourofCode.com, the Hour of Code is a one-hour introduction to computer science designed to show that anybody can learn the basics and participate in the field of computer science.
“Long term, coding is for building skills at a young age that will make it possible to do much more advanced work in later grades,” said Ronan.
According to sacredheart.edu, Erdil believes that if educators wait to educate students starting at an older age, it might be too late.
“Curriculum providers like Code.org enable students to study computer science in middle school and high school,” Erdil said.
Erdil also said, “They can also use computer science as a gateway to get introduced to other STEM areas.”
Ronan and Erdil are firm believers that this implement will only be beneficial for these students from grades K-12.
According to Sacredheart.org, through the partnership with Code.org, Sacred Heart will be providing professional development to educators throughout Connecticut.
It is Connecticut’s goal to become the hub of computer science education for grades K-12.
“Because Code.org understands that teachers are critical to achieving this vision, they generously support professional learning. We are excited to partner with them in such important work,” said Ronan.
Code.org will be providing scholarships for eligible teachers through 2020, a funding commitment of over $200,000, according to sacredheart.edu.
There will also be more than 100 teachers each year that participate in workshops led by Code.org trained facilitators, many of whom are local educators.
To Ronan and Erdil it is prevalent that the education system needs to view coding as more important to those grades K-12.
“This educational movement, promoting computer science for all, mirrors the fast pace and transformative power of the digital revolution. Students are not only using technology, but creating technology.” said Ronan.
There are several different perspectives of how beneficial coding is going to be for twenty first century students.
According to Code.org, computer science teaches skills such as coding, algorithms, and analysis of data, creating an app and the ways of the internet. It also allows students to learn about logic, problem solving, collaboration, and creativity.
With technology constantly evolving, coding is an ideal way for students to focus in on just that.
If one decides to go further with coding and computer science in their career, such as going to college to pursue a degree, there are many different career opportunities.
Some of these careers are, Information Technology consultant, information systems manager, systems analyst, gaming developer, technical writers, and many more.
“Code.org wants to interest students to something accessible and normalized for all students,” said Ronan.