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Hancock Public Schools gets coding grant

Computers are a part of life, from home to business, and coding knowledge is quickly becoming a necessity. Hancock Public Schools is making plans to incorporate computer science into its curriculum. A new grant from the Michigan Department of Education will be utilized to help make this vision a reality.

The $20,000 distribution is one of eight awarded to different districts across the state, and can be tailored to local needs. Superintendent Steve Patchin says coding will touch nearly every class offered by the district in some form.

But it’s gonna start in Kindergarten and it’s gonna work all the way up into graduation, and it will be cross curricular. We want it to worked into every single course that we offer.

You can read the entire press release below. In it Patchin notes that the demand for high tech computer science jobs is outpacing the amount of students getting college degrees in the field by a three-to-one margin.

The district was assisted in the grant process by REMC1 and the Region 16 U.P. MiSTEM Network.

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Research has found that students who learn how to code and understand the basics of computing develop advanced problem solving skills, enhance their creativity, become more effective working in teams, and develop skills of computational thinking. These skills aid in success in many areas of each student’s life across all curriculums and careers.

The collaborative efforts of REMC1 (technical support for all school districts in the area), the Region 16 U.P. MiSTEM Network, and the Hancock Public Schools have secured a $20,000 Michigan Department of Education grant to help districts in the Western U.P. to develop their own Computer Science K-12 Curriculum, tailoring it to resources and educational initiatives in their districts.

Michigan Computer Science grant awardees

  • Hancock Public Schools
  • Mt. Pleasant City School District
  • Muskegon Public Schools
  • Northwest Community Public Schools
  • Traverse City Area Public Schools
  • Watervliet School District
  • West Ottawa Public Schools
  • Yale Public Schools

From an economic perspective, there are currently 7,613 jobs in computer science available in the state of Michigan, yet in 2018 there were only 2,467 computer science bachelor degrees earned from Michigan higher education institutions. The National Center for Women & Information Technology in 2020 is predicting 350,000 new jobs will be created in computer and information systems from 2016 – 2026, trailed by engineering at 125,000. Technology and the understanding of what it can accomplish is being integrated into just about every career. Being proficient in the use of it will enhance & extend each K-12 graduate’s success in their career(s).

We are excited that area districts will have the opportunity to take part in the Strategic CSforALL Resource & Implementation Planning Tool (SCRIPT) Workshops. This will allow each district to tailor their computing curriculums to resources and educational initiatives that are unique to their districts. Special thanks to Steve Kass of REMC1 and Emily Gochis at the Region 16 U.P. MiSTEM Network for their work to make this competitive grant submission a success!

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