Amanda, a junior at Brookwood High, plans to be a computer programmer. Her AP Computer Science course is giving her a head start on her college coursework. Ryan, a senior, took computer science classes last year and currently is enrolled in a Number Theory and Cryptography class offered through Georgia Tech. A budding mathematician, he says coding is a powerful tool and a useful way of thinking.
Amanda and Ryan are among the nearly 6,000 students currently taking computer science classes in Gwinnett high schools. Starting next year, even more GCPS students will have access to computer science as instruction in coding is integrated into math and science classes at the middle school level and additional computer science classes are offered in our high schools. A new partnership with Code.org and two other metro Atlanta school districts will allow GCPS to build a community of computer science teachers, expand offerings to our students, and expose more young people to one of the fastest-growing career fields in the country.
“As the demand for computer science teachers increases, our partnership with Code.org will provide teachers with the quality staff development and support they need to successfully bring computer science to more and more of our students,” says Crystal Furman, a computer science teacher at Brookwood who is coordinating the initiative.
Through the four-year pilot program, Code.org, a non-profit education organization, is providing the Gwinnett, Forsyth, and Fulton school districts with nationally recognized computer science courses, curriculum resources, and multi-year professional development at no cost to the district. Participating teachers will get their first training this spring, with the new classes for students launching in the fall.