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Code.org Partners with 30 Public Schools bringing computer science to millions of American high school students

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(Credit: VCPost) Code.org HomepageCode.org homepage
April 24
12:15 PM 2014

Code.org partners with 30 public schools as they run towards making computer science more accessible to high school students nation wide.

What does this new deal entail? Among the schools partnered include three of the top 10 largest in the country. This gives Code.org a reach to over 2 million students, essentially 5% of all U.S public school students. Two mentioned partners include schools in Denver, Colorado and Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

The accomplishment is a merit among many they have already achieved. They influenced education policy in eight states, its curriculum is taught in over 20,000 classrooms, and they have over 1 million students enrolled in their online courses. All this began with the companies inception one year ago as a non-profit.

Who are the people behind the big push and what the over-arching goals? The company was founded by brothers and silicon valley vets Hadi Partovi and Ali Partovi together with angel investors. They created an online portal where students enroll in computer science lessons as well as assist public schools to offer free training for teachers for the organizations curriculum.

The company works towards the recognition of offering computer science as acore subject among state governments and school districts. They were behind the campaign "Hour of Code" in December. The company hopes to counter the 2001 dot-cm bust that gave everyone an excuse to save money by cutting computer science programs.

"The number one thing that decides whether a student majors in computer science [in college] is whether they are exposed to it in high school," Partovi said.

Partovi pointed out that there is a huge gap between the number of available software jobs and the number of available candidate because "there are not enough people teaching [computer science]."

"We went out of our way to find partnerships outside of the Bay Area because we didn't want people to think that this is something to fill jobs at Facebook and Google," he added.

Newly partnered Robert Runcie, the superintendent of Broward County Public School, released a official statement stating "We are delighted to bring computer science to our classrooms through our partnership with Code.org." He continued, "This is a transformative moment for public education, where we must develop the ability of our students to learn new things and apply their understanding to solve real-world problems. Computer science brings all of this together for us."

Partovi addresses the appeal of his goal for teaching computer science but gives the big picture how their company is positioned in the world of technology, "Everybody should learn the basics of how stuff works. It's more about understanding how technology works" than learning how to code, he said.

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