Make Computer Science Count

 Why Computer Science Should Be a Cornerstone of 21st-Century Education

The U.S. and global economies are increasingly driven by technology and innovation. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that more than 150,000 computing jobs will be added annually through 2020. One of every two jobs in a STEM field (science, technology, engineering, math) will be in computer science.

Computer Science in the Core?

  • Only 13 states count CS for core graduation credit.
  • Only 2% of all Advanced Placement (AP) tests given are in CS.
  • From 2005 to 2011, the number of high school introductory CS classes dropped by 17%.

Unfortunately, U.S. education is not meeting the challenge of preparing students for our innovation economy. Fewer than 8% of college freshmen end up with STEM degrees. Only about 51,000 bachelor’s degrees are awarded in annually in CS, but there are an estimated 120,000 new computing jobs each year requiring this degree.

We Need to Modernize High School Curriculum

One reason that students are not pursuing CS in college is because they have not studied—or even been exposed to—the field in high school. In 37 states, CS only counts as an elective toward graduation. It doesn’t count for science. It doesn’t count for math. It counts for the equivalent of ceramics or woodworking. This makes no sense at all when computing and STEM are critical to our economy and way of life. This needs to change.

WHAT CAN BE DONE?

Modernize State Education Standards: Make Computer Science Count!

Washington State recently joined other states in allowing computer science classes to count as a math or science requirement toward high school graduation. But what about the 37 other states?

Voices for Innovation, Microsoft, and other partners are launching an effort to encourage other states to make computer science count. Please show your support for this effort by signing our online petition at the Voices for Innovation website. When your state debates the issue, we’ll contact you and tell you how you can get involved.

Sign our “Make Computer Science Count” petition today!
Visit VoicesforInnovation.org.

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