Code Brooklyn aims to bring computer science to public schools
by Patrick Kearns
Nov 03, 2015 | 4737 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams announces the details of Code Brooklyn.
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams announces the details of Code Brooklyn.
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Technology and computer science jobs have continued to rise over the past decade in New York City, and with the launch of Code Brooklyn, Borough President Eric Adams is hoping Brooklyn children will be part of that future growth.

According to Adams, the job growth rate in the tech industry shot up 57 percent from 2007-2014 in the city, compared to 12 percent nationwide.

“Our future is being written in zeroes and ones, and coding will help our young people write that future while adding several zeroes to the ends of their salaries,” said Adams. “Code Brooklyn is a call to action for improving access to the job training and education necessary to compete in our 21st century economy.

“We need our students to be prepared to secure the jobs of today and tomorrow, as well as to grow from the quantitative and creative skills that come from exposure to computer science and coding,” he added.

Adams was joined at PS/MS 282 on Monday to announce the program, which urges every school district to participate in Hour of Code to help eliminate the stigmas associated with coding.

“The purpose of the Hour of Code is for kids and their school communities to try computer science as part of an exciting worldwide campaign,” said Hadi Partovi, co-founder and CEO of Code.org. “This is a first step in bringing 21st century opportunities to all, and it's how we break stereotypes of who can learn this field.”

Mishka Bradwell, a fifth grade student who loves to code, said that Hour of Code was what initially opened the doors for him.

“Coding is very fun for me,” Bradwell said. “Once I had the first hour, it was amazing.”

Bradwell recalled writing out code by hand on paper and how amazing it was to eventually see the game they created come to life on a computer.

During Computer Science Education Week this coming December, over 200 school districts have pledged to take part in the Hour of Code program.

Code Brooklyn also includes a detailed analysis from the Borough President's office on the technology infrastructure of Brooklyn's public schools, including access to STEM labs and wi-fi capability. Following the assessment, Adams' office will determine how to allocate additional resources.

Adams also pledged to support PS/MS 282's plan to upgrade the room students use for their coding program, which was funded by Councilman Brad Lander.

“I’ve seen the importance of making sure that every child has the opportunity to develop his or her computer science knowledge,” said Lander. “Coding is a critical skill that can propel students to success throughout their academic and professional careers.”

It won't be just schools in higher-income areas like Park Slope that will have an opportunity to participate in the program. State Senator Jesse Hamilton talked about how important it will be for students in low-income areas to get access to this program, which can ready them for college or entering the work force.

“The children who need it the most are not living in Park Slope,” Hamilton said. “The children who need it the most are just begging to be taught. They want to achieve, they want to do good things. It's our job to make sure all children are taught, not a select few. Coding is the answer for many kids who are living in Brownsville, who are living in Bed Stuy, who don't have gifted and talented programs.”

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