Public input sought on computer science standards
April public forums scheduled; online survey opens today
DES MOINES – Iowa Department of Education Director Ryan Wise today announced he’s seeking public input on computer science standards that are under consideration in Iowa.
Wise announced public forums throughout the state on April 10 and April 12, as well as an online survey open through April 13, following a state team’s recommendation to get feedback on the CSTA K-12 Computer Science Standards. These standards were developed by the Computer Science Teachers Association.
Wise convened Iowa’s Computer Science Standards Review Team earlier this year in response to Senate File 274, which former Gov. Branstad signed into law in 2017. The legislation encourages computer science in every Iowa school, establishes voluntary computer science standards and creates a computer science professional development fund to help prepare teachers.
“Iowa students deserve opportunities to learn and experience computer science, which has become a basic skill,” said Ann Wiley, instructional technology coordinator for the Johnston Community School District and a member of the Computer Science Standards Review Team. “We must raise expectations for computer science knowledge and skills in Iowa schools so that students are prepared for the demands of postsecondary education and the workforce.”
Bennett Brown, another review team member, said: “The review team identified the CSTA standards because they include fundamental concepts of computer science for all students beginning in kindergarten, present options for high school computer science courses through mathematics, science, or computer science graduation credits, and would increase the availability of computer science for all students.” Brown is an 8th grade teacher at South East Junior High School in Iowa City and author of Project Lead the Way Computer Science Principles.
Feedback from the public forums and online survey will be used to provide guidance to the Computer Science Standards Review Team, which is expected to submit a final recommendation to the State Board of Education in June. If adopted, computer science standards will be optional for school districts.
Feedback at the April 10 and April 12 public forums can be provided either in person or remotely from satellite centers (through video conferencing). Details are as follows:
Tuesday, April 10, 4 to 6 p.m.
Summit Middle School Media Center
9500 Windsor Parkway
Johnston, IA 50131
Innovative Teaching and Technology Center, Room 322
University of Northern Iowa
1204 W 23rd St.
Cedar Falls, IA 50613
Campus Map (building labeled ITTC)
Mississippi Bend AEA, Room 3
729 21st St.
Bettendorf, IA 52722
Thursday, April 12, 4 to 6 p.m.
South East Junior High Media Center
2501 Bradford Dr.
Iowa City, IA 52240
Thomas Jefferson High School, Rm. A125
2501 W. Broadway
Council Bluffs, IA 51501
Fairfield High School, Rm. 204
605 E. Broadway
Fairfield, IA 52556
Odebolt Arthur Battle Creek Ida Grove High School, Superintendent’s Office
900 John Montgomery Drive
Ida Grove, IA 51445
For more information visit the Computer Science Standards Review Team webpage on the Iowa Department of Education’s website.