Since 2015 the ECEP Co-Sponsorship program has distributed over $650,000 to ECEP member states to support state teams with broadening participation in computer science education strategies. The national funding landscape for this type of work is varied, and ECEP has been committed to not only working collaboratively with state teams as they chart a path forward but to also fund state team activity.
In order to receive a co-sponsorship, ECEP state teams respond to a competitive request for proposals. This funding cycle, ECEP is granting co-sponsorship funding to four states: Georgia, Mississippi, Rhode Island, and South Carolina. Nearly $70,000 in total will be dispersed to these states’ ECEP teams to support projects occurring between January and December of this year.
The ECEP team from Georgia, led by Bryan Cox at the Georgia Department of Education, with collaborators from the Constellations Center and CS4GA, is organizing and convening a 2-day state-wide summit in March 2021. The theme will be “Beyond Access: Equity in Georgia CS Education” and the conference will be split into four tracks: teachers, counselors, administrators/leaders, and Cyber/IT support staff.
The ECEP team from Mississippi, led by Dr. Shelly Hollis, Assistant Director of Cyber Education at Mississippi State University, has been funded to develop a strategic state plan for computer science education from kindergarten through college and the workforce. This project is being supported by collaborators at the Department of Education and other stakeholder groups. This work will start with conducting a computer science landscape study in the first half of 2021 and then using that study to inform the development of the state plan, which will be created in the second half of 2021. The final plan will be submitted to the Mississippi State Board of Education for official approval.
The Rhode Island ECEP team, led by Dr. Carol Giuriceo, Director of the Rhode Island STEAM Center at Rhode Island College, is using their co-sponsorship funding to work with districts to create an Action Plan Toolkit and Broadening Participation in Computing Strategies List. These resources will include materials such as slide decks with information on how to increase diversity in K-12 classrooms that can be downloaded, modified, and easily distributed to stakeholders including parents, school counselors, and school committee members. Collaborators from the Rhode Island Department of Education and CS4RI are supporting this effort.
The ECEP team from South Carolina are convening a broad-based team of leaders composed of representatives from the South Carolina Department of Education, industry, and K-12 education to create a new landscape report for their state that closely examines the CS landscape from 2015 to 2020. This initiative is led by Dr. Jennifer Albert, Director of The STEM Center at the Citadel, and Rosemary Bianchi, a consultant focusing on K-12 computer science education. In developing the landscape report, the team will utilize the CAPE framework to ensure that their work both takes a systems-level approach to surveying the landscape and centers around issues of equity.
Learn more about what all of our states are doing at https://ecepalliance.org/about/alliance-members.