CS Ed Week 2015: It’s Here!

December 7th, 2015

Today marks the beginning of Computer Science Education Week, an annual, global program dedicated to calling attention to the importance of K-12 Computer Science Education.  As part of our quest to increase the number of high school graduates who choose a career in technology, Nextech is committed to providing the curriculum and teacher training needed to bring computer science education to every classroom in Indiana. To call attention to the importance of this topic and to kick off CS Ed Week in a big way, we brought together this morning elected state and local leaders, educators, and members of the local business community for a special event at the Indiana State House.

As you listened to the words of our guest speakers, there were two common themes that emerged:

  • Today’s K-12 students are the future of Indianapolis; they are #WhatsNext for our city.
  • The community must come together to INSPIRE young minds today to embrace the opportunities awaiting them in the future.

It was so refreshing to know that others share Nextech’s fundamental belief that every young person, particularly those who have limited resources, deserve the opportunity to explore, experiment and imagine the wonder of creating technology.  And we couldn’t think of a better forum to give some local area students that opportunity than the atrium of the State House.

Joining us at the event were young scholars from Arsenal Technical High School (Arsenal Tech) and Charles A. Tindley Schools. These kids were invited along so they could participate in an Hour of Code, the signature event of CS Ed Week. Launched by Code.org in 2013, this grassroots movement is the quickest and most effective way to show students that coding is not hard and boring and they EVERYBODY can do it. To prove our point, the juniors and seniors from Arsenal Tech taught our state’s brightest minds a thing or two about coding as they led them through a series of activities!

As fun as today’s events were for everyone involved, they really are just a small piece of the puzzle. Every young person – and their community of educators and caretakers – must be given access to a progressive set of experiences that takes them on the journey from being someone who merely consumes technology to being an innovator who harnesses the power of technology to solve the challenges around them.

Lao Tzu said the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. For several young people today that journey began with a single, memorable experience – an Hour of Code at the Indiana State House!

* We want to thank everyone who joined us for the morning events and extend a special THANK YOU to those leaders who spoke to the audience: First Lady Karen Pence, Lieutenant Governor of Indiana Sue Ellspermann, State Superintendent Glenda Ritz, Indianapolis Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Lewis D. Ferebee and Race Car Driver J.R. Hildebrand

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