Mini-Grants Will Support Organizing and Training for Computing Education in Three States and Puerto Rico

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    ECEP has awarded funding to support efforts in South Carolina, Maryland, Texas, and Puerto Rico that will improve educational efforts in computer science in those states. As part of its mission, ECEP Alliance invited members to apply for mini-grants to support statewide and systemic change, expansion of computing education pathways, and broadened participation.

    South Carolina received support in the first round of funding for two related efforts. The first is to update and create a report on the landscape of computer science education in the state that will examine how CS education has developed in the state since a 2007 report, and clarify who is involved and the curricular initiatives being offered. The second is to develop a steering committee representing all levels of education, industry, and the state education department as a forum for setting priorities and creating a unified voice to promote CS education in SC.

    Maryland was among the states funded in the second round of ECEP mini-grants. It, too, will use the support to build a community and do strategic planning over the coming academic year, culminating in a statewide summit. CS Matters in Maryland leaders are organizing the effort, which builds upon the CE21- Maryland planning efforts and summit in 2013.

    Texas is also supporting a statewide summit with support from ECEP.  It plans to host a gathering in Houston in conjunction with the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in on Computing in October 2015, which will serve as a springboard to extend the work of the Texas Alliance for Computer Science Education (TACSE) across the longhorn state.

    Finally, Puerto Rico received support for a cadre of teachers and faculty to participate in summer professional development workshops for Exploring Computer Science. The group then plans to support and lead an effort to bring the introductory high school curriculum and professional development program to Puerto Rico.

    ECEP mini-grants are under $25,000 open to ECEP member states and are sponsored by the National Science Foundation. The next mini-grant round is planned for October 2015.