During the week of December 3, students across the West Chester Area School District and around the globe participated in the Hour of Code to coincide with Computer Science Education Week. Initially designed as a one-hour introduction to computer science to dispel the myth that only certain people were capable of coding, it has since grown into activities, lessons, and events that extend far beyond an hour. Students in the WCASD engaged in the Hour of Code in both the elementary and secondary schools.
"Coding and computer science involves a level of problem-solving skills that will help students in every aspect of their lives," said Ian Kerr, WCASD math and computer science supervisor. "Our students are growing up in a tech-heavy, data-driven world. Computer Science and logical thinking provide students with a meaningful skillset that our society and job market requires.”
The goal of the Hour of Code is to help everyone realize that they can learn the basics of coding and lay a foundation for success in any 21st-century career path. Only 26 states have developed K-12 computer science curriculum standards. Pennsylvania is one of those states. The WCASD offers four computer science courses to students in grades 6-8 and five computer science courses to students in grades 9-12. For students in grades K-5, computer science skills are woven into all subject areas of the curriculum.
According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, computing occupations are the number one source of all new wages in the U.S. and makeup over half of all projected new jobs in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, making Computer Science one of the most in-demand college degrees.