Push for Computer Tech in North Dakota schools

Computer science in schools
Computer science in schools(KFYR)
Published: Nov. 1, 2021 at 4:58 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - While lawmakers debate how to spend ARPA dollars, other state agencies are pushing them to approve spending on other federal funds.

The Department of Public Instruction says there’s limited time to install new curriculum to boost cyber security and other tech-related fields.

According to DPI, only 15 North Dakota schools offer an AP computer science course, and only 44% of state high schools teach a foundational computer science class.

However, it also says the classes are in high demand from students.

“We need to get ahead of this. If we don’t do this, another state’s students are going to do this, and we will be outsourcing our talent rather than growing the talent that can remain in North Dakota and provide services for every other state in the nation,” said State Superintendent Kirsten Baesler.

There is a bill to be debated during the special session which would make a course in computer science a requirement for high school graduation starting in 2025.

Baesler is requesting lawmakers approve the bill which would also use federal funds to train teachers for the classes.

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