- School boards fight to keep CS out of schools, since every minute spent on CS is one less minute spent on core subjects like English and math. The students’ test scores in these core subjects determine next year’s funding, so CS is a threat.
- Teachers often refuse to teach real CS because more often than not they don’t understand it. Instead, they end up teaching word processing and website construction, while calling it CS.
- Parents often oppose CS classes since the grade has no direct benefit on their child’s academic prospects. This is compounded by a lack of understanding of the difference between their child playing video games and their child writing video games.
- Students intentionally tune out of CS class since there are few things worse in American high school than being labelled a nerd.
The nonprofit Code.org estimates that by 2020 there will be a million more computing jobs than there are computer science students. Yet for all the talk about preparing kids for the workplace, many American schools seem content to leave CS to expensive universities to teach (barring the cheapest alternative: teaching oneself to code).We don’t expect every primary school student in America to become a coder and go to work for Google. Rather, what Fraser likes about this particular Vietnamese school is what we like: that students are exposed to CS from a young age and given the freedom to pursue it to their own limits. As he says, “Start everyone early, and offer those who are passionate about the subject limitless room to grow.”[Classroom image courtesy of Shutterstock]