ARIZONA NEWS

Arizona teachers trained to integrate computer science in their classrooms

Jul 23, 2018, 4:31 AM
(Griselda Zetino/KTAR News)...
(Griselda Zetino/KTAR News)
(Griselda Zetino/KTAR News)

PHOENIX — Two years ago, the principal at Fountain Hills High School asked teachers if they were interested in teaching computer science.

With no background in computer science, Randy Bragg stepped up to the challenge.

“We would really be doing a disservice to the kids if we’re not preparing them for this,” he said. “So I said, ‘Yeah, this sounds like something I want to do.’”

He now teaches an Advanced Placement computer science principles class. He’s part of a growing number of Arizona teachers who are getting trained in computer science and are passing on what they learn to their students.

Last week, Bragg and more than 80 other teachers from across the state were at Grand Canyon University for a free, five-day workshop learning how to integrate computer science curriculum in their classrooms.

They learned how to implement no-cost, open source, standard aligned computer science curriculum put together by Code.org, a non-profit that promotes access to computer science education.

The workshop is part of a year-long program, which is put together by Grand Canyon University and Science Foundation Arizona. Teachers also attend day-long workshops throughout the school year. The program is meant to help address the state’s shortfall of skilled coding teachers.

Linda Coyle, director of education for the Science Foundation Arizona, noted there more than 10,000 computer science jobs left unfilled in Arizona. Meanwhile, she said only 546 students graduated last year from the state’s three public universities with computer science degrees.

“Obviously 546 is not going to fill 10,000 jobs,” Coyle said.

She said one way to solve that problem is to “start offering computer science courses to students in the lower grade levels.”

Cori Araza, director of STEM outreach and program development at Grand Canyon University, said the year-long program equipping teachers with computer science skills will hopefully help get more students interested in computer science jobs, which have starting salaries of about $46,000 in Arizona.

“GCU wants to be a part of making sure that we have the next generation of students ready to become computer scientists, and the best way to do that is to train teachers,” she said.

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(El Mirage Police Department Video Screenshot)...
SuElen Rivera

El Mirage police release video of elementary school lockdown

The El Mirage Police Department on Tuesday released body-worn camera footage of an elementary school lockdown where three people were arrested last week. 
1 day ago
(Pexels Photo)...
KTAR.com

Phoenix man gets 25 years in prison for sexual abuse of a child

A Phoenix man last week was sentenced to 25 years in prison for the sexual abuse of a child.
1 day ago
Republican Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey speaks at an event touting a new universal school voucher progra...
Associated Press

Gov. Doug Ducey takes victory lap over Arizona school voucher plan

Republican Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey and backers of universal school vouchers took a victory lap Tuesday over legislation the Republican-controlled Legislature enacted in June.
1 day ago
(Twitter Photo/@DougDucey)...
KTAR.com

Here’s why a portion of Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey’s new border wall was temporarily knocked over

Within days of announcing action to fill in border wall gaps near Yuma, a portion of Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey's new barrier was temporarily knocked over Monday morning. Here's the explanation from the governor's office.
1 day ago
(Twitter Photo/@MaricopaVote)...
Kevin Stone

3-vote margin triggers automatic recount in Maricopa County primary race

One race in the Maricopa County’s recent primary election was so close that it triggered an automatic recount under state law.
1 day ago
(Photo by Oleg Nikishin/Newsmakers)...
Associated Press

Battles rage in Arizona courts over 3 voter initiatives

Proponents of three voter initiatives who each turned in hundreds of thousands of signatures last month to qualify them for the November ballot are trying to beat back legal challenges that could prevent them from going before voters.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Ways to prevent clogged drains and what to do if you’re too late

While there are a variety of ways to prevent clogged drains, it's equally as important to know what to do when you're already too late.
...
Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Why your student-athlete’s physical should be conducted by a sports medicine specialist

Dr. Anastasi from Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine in Tempe answers some of the most common questions.
...
CANVAS ANNUITY

Best retirement savings rates hit 4.30%

Maximize your retirement savings with guaranteed fixed rates up to 4.30%. Did you know there is a financial product that can give you great interest rates as you build your retirement savings and provide you with a paycheck for life once you retire? It might sound too good to be true but it is not; this product is called an annuity.
Arizona teachers trained to integrate computer science in their classrooms