President Obama wants computer science taught as often as reading, writing and arithmetic in American schools.
“In the new economy, computer science isn’t an optional skill — it’s a basic skill, right along with the three ‘Rs,’ ” he said Saturday during his weekly address.
“Nine out of ten parents want it taught at their children’s schools. Yet right now, only about a quarter of our K-12 schools offer computer science,” the president added.
“I’ve got a plan to help make sure all our kids get an opportunity to learn computer science, especially girls and minorities. That’s what this is all about — each of us doing our part to make sure all our young people can compete in a high-tech global economy.”
Obama said his “Computer Science For All Initiative” would improve funding for the nation’s technology education.
He added that making students across the country more computer-savvy would help them better compete in tomorrow’s economy.
“We have to make sure all of our kids are equipped for the jobs of the future — which means not just being able to work with computers, but developing the analytical and coding skills to power our innovation economy,” he said.
“Workers of all kinds need to be able to figure out how to break a big problem into smaller pieces and identify the right steps to solve it,” Obama continued.
Obama first announced his computer science strategy during his final State of the Union address earlier this month.
It includes over $4 billion in funding for states in this year’s federal budget, with $100 million going directly to school districts nationwide.