Watchworthy Wednesday: Opportunity to Provide Computer Ed in K-12 Schools

Want to provide a computer science and computational thinking education project in K-12 schools? Teams of educators, researchers, community members and others interested in doing so are being offered the chance to be awarded 19 “CS for All” grants, totaling $20 million, from the National Science Foundation (NSF).

“With this solicitation, the NSF focuses on researcher-practitioner partnerships (RPPs) that foster the research and development needed to bring CS/CT to all schools,” says Nichole D. Pinkard, founder of the Digital Youth Network and associate professor in the School of Design College of Computing and Digital Media at DePaul University. “This type of solicitation that brings together educators, researchers, community members and district leadership to engage in shared inquiry toward improving learning environments for youth presents an excellent opportunity for the DML community members interested in computer science and computational thinking.”

The selected proposals will be funded in two “strands” that foster design, implementation at scale, and research: at the high school level, with the focus is on preparing and supporting teachers to teach rigorous CS courses; and at the preK-8 level, with the focus is on designing, developing, and piloting instructional materials that integrate CS and CT into preK-8 classrooms.

From NSF:

In order to ensure that advances in computing education are inclusive of our diverse student populations (the “for All” part of “CS for All”), proposals on either strand must address, in a significant manner, the longstanding underrepresentation in computing. Groups traditionally underrepresented or underserved in computing include women, persons with disabilities, African Americans/Blacks, Hispanic Americans, American Indians, Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, Native Pacific Islanders, and persons from economically disadvantaged backgrounds.

Deadline to apply for the CS for All grants is Feb. 28.

To support the creation of effective proposals, Pinkard notes, NSF is hosting three RPP team-based technical workshops designed “to engage proposal teams with different models of RPPs, strategies and tools for forming and maintaining RPPs, and data collection and analysis approaches well-suited to RPPs.”

NSF is providing travel and lodging support for teams selected to attend one of the three workshops located in Atlanta at Spelman College (Jan. 9-10), Los Angeles at UCLA (Jan. 12-13) or Chicago at DePaul University (Jan. 27-28). Applications are being accepted this month.

Banner image credit: U.S. Department of Education

Editor’s note: Watchworthy Wednesday posts highlight interesting DML resources and appear in DML Central every Wednesday. Any tips for future posts are welcome. Please comment below or send email to mcruz@hri.uci.edu.