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Pilot

CS4MS: Year 2

In preparation for the second year of the CS4MS pilot, which coincides with the 2017-2018 school year, nine teacher trainings were held throughout Mississippi. The trainings serviced a total of 66 elementary teachers over the course of three two-day training periods, as well as 69 middle school teachers and 91 high school teachers over the course of three week-long training periods each.

The middle school teachers were trained on a new course called Cyber Foundations, which teaches students about keyboarding, digital citizenship, spreadsheets, word processing, and presentation tools during the first half of the course. The second half of the course incorporates Code.org CS Discoveries curriculum to introduce students to problem-solving, web development, and game design.

Forty new Exploring Computer Science (ECS) teachers joined 51 returning ECS teachers for a week of training on the first two units of this course curriculum. Units 1 and 2 of ECS lay the foundation of problem solving and critical thinking skills needed for success in computer science. The new teachers benefited from the experience of those teaches who had taught the course for the first time during the 2016-17 school year. Additionally, the returning teachers were able to complete their training requirements for the course and gain additional insight by reviewing the material taught in units 1 and 2 from an experienced perspective.

Categories
Pilot

The CS4MS Pilot

Starting with the 2016-2017 school year, the Mississippi Department of Education will begin the initial roll-out of the Computer Science for Mississippi (CS4MS) pilot program in 38 school districts across the state. During the pilot’s first year, 67 high school teachers from 50 high schools and 167 K-5 teachers from 106 elementary schools will teach computer science content to their students. More than 200┬áteachers received training this summer.

Participating districts were chosen via an application process and have committed to a robust schedule of professional development, data gathering, and adequate technology and infrastructure to qualify for the CS4MS pilot. For elementary-age students, the computer science curriculum will include coding, digital literacy, keyboarding, and robotics. High school students will enroll in a comprehensive course called Exploring Computer Science (ECS).

During future years of the CS4MS pilot program, MDE plans to add 6th-8th grade courses, as well as an expanded offering of high school courses. Ultimately, the goal of CS4MS is to have a continuous K-12 computer science pipeline in place for all Mississippi public schools by the year 2024.

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Prepare Your School and Your Students for Computer Science

Even if your school is not currently part of the CS4MS pilot, we encourage you to offer computer science activities for your students by integrating coding into classroom activities, encouraging students to experiment with online coding platforms, and organizing after-school clubs. There are a number of excellent resources that can help you get started today.

Click here for a map showing participating school districts for the 2016-2017 school year.

Click here for a map showing participating school districts for the 2017-2018 school year.