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Education Government The Almighty Buck United States Politics

Senate Draft of No Child Left Behind Act Draft Makes CS a 'Core' Subject 216

theodp (442580) writes "If at first you don't succeed, lobby, lobby again. That's a lesson to be learned from Microsoft and Google, who in 2010 launched advocacy coalition Computing in the Core, which aimed "to strengthen K-12 computer science education and ensure that computer science is one of the core academic subjects that prepares students for jobs in our digital society." In 2013, Computing in the Core "merged" with Code.org, a new nonprofit led by the next door neighbor of Microsoft's General Counsel and funded by wealthy tech execs and their companies. When Code.org 'taught President Obama to code' in a widely-publicized White House event last December, visitor records indicate that Google, Microsoft, and Code.org execs had a sitdown immediately afterwards with the head of the NSF, and a Microsoft lobbyist in attendance returned to the White House the next day with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and General Counsel Brad Smith (who also sits on Code.org's Board) in tow. Looks like all of that hard work may finally pay off. Education Week reports that computer science has been quietly added to the list of disciplines defined as 'core academic subjects' in the Senate draft of the rewritten No Child Left Behind Act, a status that opens the doors to a number of funding opportunities. After expressing concern that his teenage daughters hadn't taken to coding the way he'd like, President Obama added, "I think they got started a little bit late. Part of what you want to do is introduce this with the ABCs and the colors." So, don't be too surprised if your little ones are soon focusing on the four R's — reading, 'riting, 'rithmetic, and Rapunzel — in school!"
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Senate Draft of No Child Left Behind Act Draft Makes CS a 'Core' Subject

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  • Double tassel ... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Thursday April 09, 2015 @12:23PM (#49439411) Homepage

    So, is there anything which has overcome the double tassel distribution which programming has always had?

    For literally decades, it's been "these people get it, these people don't" with very little in the middle.

    Have we fixed this? Have we found way to teach it which prevent this? Have we even explained it?

    Otherwise this is fairly meaningless drivel which is little more intelligent than "Children should be 3% taller for each of the next 10 years".

    I've know really smart mathematicians who couldn't be made to understand computer programming. And, likewise, I've known some awesome CS people who struggled with math.

    So what makes us think your average school children will be any different?

    As usual, I worry when Microsoft and Google are telling us what the future should be. Because it's all about the future as they want it to be and as it benefits them.

    As long as Microsoft and Google are so reliant on H1B workers, educating American kids to code is a pointless exercise.

    • Re:Double tassel ... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by medv4380 ( 1604309 ) on Thursday April 09, 2015 @12:34PM (#49439551)
      I agree with some of what you're pointing out, but I still have to disagree. A lot of people still don't get Math, but we have it as a core class anyways. Mostly because unless we have everyone try it we only find the small percentage that actively sought out Math. The people who may have had the aptitude for it in their Teens that didn't encounter it until their Mid Twenties are a bit past their prime to learn the higher end stuff. Some still do, but its definitely more difficult. Personally I think a CS credit should just be put into the Math as an option to go into CS or Calculus after they've done Algebra, and Geometry. I've yet to see a person who hates, or doesn't get Algebra that could code at all. I've seen people who couldn't do Algebra try, and they never do too well. If you don't get the abstractions of Algebra you'll fail at CS so it should be in the Core in the Math track.
      • This. These core classes are not to create CS majors, it is to give everyone at least a basic understanding of what programming is... given today's society and work place, that's a pretty nice skill to have, although I'm sure the amount of worthless programmer resumes will probably rise due to it.
        • If even one person running an application calls tech support and says, "I just got a database error, do you want a screen shot?" instead of "My computer broke and my screen went blank, can you come fix it?" it'll have done its job.
        • People don't need coding per se, they need a basic understanding of how computers work first. General computing classes would go a long ways in helping people become more technologically proficient.
      • You know, my personal experience, both while I was getting my education and since .. is that computers and math are intrinsically linked right up to a point.

        And then they become very different things understood by different people in completely different ways.

        I went to school with a woman who I now know to be a math teacher. But she couldn't be coached through first year programming. Not by the profs, not by paid tutors, and not by me, not by anybody else. She just couldn't wrap her head around it.

        I don'

        • by ranton ( 36917 )

          I went to school with a woman who I now know to be a math teacher. But she couldn't be coached through first year programming. Not by the profs, not by paid tutors, and not by me, not by anybody else. She just couldn't wrap her head around it.

          I tutored a few future math teachers in Calc 2 and I can tell you many math teachers can't wrap their head around any math more complicated than the fractions they will teach their 5th graders. The concepts taught in a first year programming class will be easily learned by any competent math major. A math major who cannot understand functions, conditional logic, recursive sequences, or summations is incompetent.

          Because I've known a couple of PhDs in math who could barely use email, let alone anything more advanced.

          Sending email has as much to do with computer science as beating level 84 of candy crush.

          • Honestly, this was some pretty bright mathematicians who were taking advanced math.

            They could understand the concepts of these things, but then something as simple as "when do I use a for loop or a while loop" they'd just completely fall off the rails. They just could not string it together.

            But I've known numerous people who did really advanced math, and then took first year CS later in their education and completely failed to grasp it.

            These weren't people who couldn't grasp the math, this was people who g

            • by gweihir ( 88907 )

              That is certainly true. However, try to qualify random MDs as surgeons, and you will see the same. That still does not make surgery into something that is not part of the medical field. Much of CS is part of mathematics, but it is an advanced specialization, not basic Math. It also has strong engineering components, that you find in a few mathematical disciplines as well.

        • by Phreakiture ( 547094 ) on Thursday April 09, 2015 @02:13PM (#49440601) Homepage

          And then they become very different things understood by different people in completely different ways.

          Here's a perfect example:

          a = a * 2

          Now, getting past the substitute of * for X as an indicator of a multiplication operation, most CS-types will interpret this as a command to double the value of a while a math-type would instead view this as a statement of fact (within the scope of the problem) and infer from this (probably without even thinking about it) that a is zero because no other value satisfies the formula.

          When I started playing with computers at an age of nine or ten, (this would have been an Apple ][ back in 1980), my Mom saw me key in a statement that said A = A + 1 and immediately objected, insisting that you could not do that . . . and she isn't even good at math.

          So yes, I agree, it is a related, but different, kind of thinking, and should be a separate subject.

        • by gweihir ( 88907 )

          Look at numerics. These people do hardcore CS and pretty tough specialized Mathematics in addition. True, not all mathematicians are good at all mathematical disciplines, but that is the same in other fields.

      • I'm not sure what your point really is. K-12 is does not imply that Calculus is getting taught to 1st graders, so the problem you bring up happens to be impacting to the "advanced" levels of education. Sure, customize the top end of High school with advanced classes and nobody would argue (or at least not that many of us). Kids in first grade lack the capacity for critical thought, so teaching them coding is pure lunacy. There are far to many other things for first graders to learn, which in turn sets t

      • Yeah, I don't think everyone needs to be able to program well, but I do think our public education system to aim to give everyone a very basic understanding of what a computer does and what it does not do, how a computer works, and what programming is. Computers have become too much a part of our lives, and too vital to our economic and social systems, for people to be completely ignorant of how they work.

        I also agree that it makes sense to connect computer science to math. Really, I'd want to restructur

        • Why? Because you need to to know how a TV or bluray player or iPad or iWatch or Google Glasses works in order to use them? Do drivers know how an internal combustion engine works or know the oil grade the engine needs to operate? No. You just need to know how to use it. In a computers case, how to turn it on, and use the program that use need to use. That's it. How the computer processes information is not relevant to the user.

          Computer Science is not a core high school subject and computer programm
      • by PRMan ( 959735 )

        I agree. The last thing we need on this planet is everyone taking Calculus. I've taken so much Calculus for a CS degree and I have NEVER used it outside a classroom.

        Personally, I think the proofs and graphic ideas from Geometry come up once in a while in CS. But I agree in essence that taking coding instead of Algebra II / Trigonometry / Calculus as an option would benefit the user and society much better. I guarantee that both of my daughters would have chosen programming instead if it were presented t

        • Which you don't take in HIGH SCHOOL. That's the point. Taking programming does not benefit society. Good god low information people.
      • by gweihir ( 88907 )

        I agree on that. Understanding and competently wielding abstract tools is key to both Mathematics and CS. Sure, many mathematicians write really horrible code, but usually it works fine, so that argument does not count.

      • It's not a core course and no one is stopping you from taking an elective, which programming falls under.
    • by orasio ( 188021 )

      I've know really smart mathematicians who couldn't be made to understand computer programming. And, likewise, I've known some awesome CS people who struggled with math.

      Are you sure?
      It's hard for me to imagine an awesome CS person who struggles at math. CS is mostly math, or pretty close. Computability, regular expressions, automata, formal proofs, all of those are needed, in my book, to be awesome at CS, and I think you should be at least decent at math to grasp those.

      • I am, at best, somewhat middling at math. I can understand what calculus does far better than I can understand how to apply it.

        I once asked a prof how I was supposed to know which integration formula/identify I was supposed to be using. He basically said "after a while you just know which ones". Because, apparently, there are no teachable rules for this, just hand waving guidelines which are supposed to make sense at some point.

        I could look up the formulae in the book, but was never really good at memori

        • by itzly ( 3699663 )

          I once asked a prof how I was supposed to know which integration formula/identify I was supposed to be using. He basically said "after a while you just know which ones". Because, apparently, there are no teachable rules for this, just hand waving guidelines which are supposed to make sense at some point.

          Just enter the equation in Mathematica, or similar.

        • I once asked a prof how I was supposed to know which integration formula/identify I was supposed to be using. He basically said "after a while you just know which ones". Because, apparently, there are no teachable rules for this, just hand waving guidelines which are supposed to make sense at some point.

          Well, yes. Integrating an unfamiliar type of equation is one of the tougher things to do in math--in fact, most of the time it's not possible to integrate a comoplex equation symbolically, which is why we d

    • by hlee ( 518174 )

      The way this played out in my undergraduate degree, which was a hybrid course in electronics engineering and computer science was that those of us who had a knack for programming ended up electing more and more CS subjects, while those who didn't ended with a more EE oriented course (many of those individuals went the telecommunications route rather than circuit design). Similarly, an introductory CS course could provide different tracks to allow students to focus on their strengths, i.e. while everyone is

    • by narcc ( 412956 )

      What a load of nonsense!

      I've yet to have a student who simply "didn't get it". No study that I've encountered mentions these "just can't do it" students.

      You just want to believe that you're somehow special because you can write computer programs. Odd, as even children can, and often do, successfully teach themselves!

      • You just want to believe that you're somehow special because you can write computer programs.

        Sorry, no. You should be able to smell your own bullshit, because I sure as hell can.

        I was told about the double-tassel distribution by no less than three people with PhDs in CS who taught at university, all in my first year of university.

        I can [codinghorror.com] cite [einarsen.no] references [mdx.ac.uk], can [wordpress.com] you?

        I have no need to feel myself as being some special little snowflake because I learned how to program. It certainly isn't something which I feel sh

        • But if you think I'm pulling it out of my ass or because I want to feel special ... you're a moron.

          There's a group of people who for some reason claim that _there is no such thing as ability_. This is an obviously insane belief, but they will hold it nevertheless.

          But what is a "double tassel" distribution?

    • by gweihir ( 88907 )

      Just like for any other engineering field, there is no way to overcome that distribution. It is human nature. The only thing different is that all other engineering fields have learned, usually at great cost, that those that do not get it must be kept out of the profession. The IT field is still ignoring that hard fact, which is why software is still to abysmally bad these days.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 09, 2015 @12:24PM (#49439421)

    Fuck Microsoft and fuck google. Why should they expect the public to fund a specialized skill set that makes them money.

    If they truely cared about CS literacy, they could institute and EASILY fund their own programs. Maybe they should consider doing on the job training? For example. They could create 9 month job opportunities (commonly called interships or co ops) and train people to code during that time. The ones that clearly have the mindset for programming can get hired on as full time employees, and the others have gained some valuable work experience.

    • by PRMan ( 959735 )
      How? Kids are in school all day and do homework all night. To get kids early enough to teach them they HAVE to get into the public schools.
    • Fuck Microsoft and fuck google. Why should they expect the public to fund a specialized skill set that makes them money.

      Why should any employer want the school system to educate students to do anything useful? Heck, why are we funding education at all? By your argument, employers that want people to be able to keep books (add and subtract), or email (read and write) or treat patients (science) should be funding these things them selves. This is the same sort of BS circular logic people like to give as to why we shouldn't tax companies that depend on public infrastructure (since they just pass the costs onto customers anyway)

  • i don't like this (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Ward, Darrin ( 4073543 ) on Thursday April 09, 2015 @12:27PM (#49439443) Homepage
    the more people that understand computers, the less i'll be able to exploit them and steal their data and infect their computers.
  • If this thread is like all the others then we'll get a lot of posts along the lines of how kids shouldn't be taught CS, how if they're not self motivated to find it for themselves then they shouldn't learn it.

    If you believe that, can you explain what about CS is different from maths, English, physics, chemistry, biology, foreign languages, history, wood working, underwater basket weaving etc etc?

    Seriously, I'm not being snarky. This comes up a lot, and I'd like to know why people think this.

    • If you believe that, can you explain what about CS is different from maths, English, physics, chemistry, biology, foreign languages, history, wood working, underwater basket weaving etc etc?

      CS seems to be the catch-all these days for undecided students. They're pushed into the program because of the STEM hysteria, but they're not talented enough for science, engineering or math. So you end up with a lot of kids who take CS in college because they like to play video games and don't know what they'd like to do with their life, and "that's where all the jobs are."

      So in a class of 20 students, you get maybe 3-4 who really are good at it, another half dozen or so that are passable, and the rest wh

      • That's actually why the subject should be introduced in grade school. The kids who have no aptitude for it will find that out before they go to college and declare it as a major, leading to a much higher percentage of that 20 students being good at it.

        • That's actually why the subject should be introduced in grade school.

          I get where you're coming from, but most of them will get it in the form of Scratch, which while isn't terrible, won't really prepare them for non-trivial programming, such as writing a recursive algorithm to draw a fractal pattern or create a double-linked list, both of which can be tricky and require a bit of thought.

          • by PRMan ( 959735 )

            Create a double-linked list...

            1. What century is this?

            2. var list = LinkedList();

            BTW, I've never once used this since I started with C# in 1999.

            • Anyone who can't write their own single and double-linked lists, queues, stacks, etc. isn't really worth having around as a programmer. These are really basic skills. The minute they can't find something that's pre-made, they're hosed.
        • So let them learn in college. In all likelihood they will have picked up a lot on their own already, same as someone who, in a previous generations, is interested in auto mechanics would have already confirmed that interest by helping helping replace the oil, air and gas filters, plugs, distributor cap, rotor, points, and wires on the family chariot and gone on to trade school.
    • If this thread is like all the others then we'll get a lot of posts along the lines of how kids shouldn't be taught CS, how if they're not self motivated to find it for themselves then they shouldn't learn it.

      If you believe that, can you explain what about CS is different from maths, English, physics, chemistry, biology, foreign languages, history, wood working, underwater basket weaving etc etc?

      Seriously, I'm not being snarky. This comes up a lot, and I'd like to know why people think this.

      Programming is a highly specialized discipline that takes years of practice to do well. Most people never have any use for it at all, and before I am told that we use it everyday, keep in mind that (presumably) we all have jobs involving it and are therefore biased. On top of that, these reforms are pushing it for not only middle school, but even elementary school. We're not going to get a utopian society were everyone knows how to program.

      Instead, we're going to get a scenario where all these kids are

    • If this thread is like all the others then we'll get a lot of posts along the lines of how kids shouldn't be taught CS, how if they're not self motivated to find it for themselves then they shouldn't learn it.

      I don't think that's the prevalent argument. I think the prevalent argument is that a significant percentage of people can't learn it, no matter how hard they try [codinghorror.com].

      And no, we can't explain what's different about CS that causes that -- so far, we can only measure the outcome. Nevertheless, unless there's

      • I don't think that's the prevalent argument. I think the prevalent argument is that a significant percentage of people can't learn it, no matter how hard they try.

        I think a lot of people can't learn maths to any meaningful degree either. And, remembering back, some people couldn't even attempt to put a nail in a plank of wood without destroying the hammer. Others have a tin ear for foreign languages and so on and so forth. We still attempt to teach them, presumably so that the people who do have aptitude fi

        • Even people who suck at math can usually learn enough to do things like counting money or telling the time. In contrast (as the article I linked shows), many CS students are incapable of understanding even something as fundamental as variable assignment. That's what makes CS different.

          Having CS be an elective, like shop class, makes much more sense.

        • Or possibly because we think that knowing about stuff in general is part of being a well-rounded citizen.

          Looking at the obesity epidemic, we already have too many "well-rounded citizens." If this trend continues, those who aren't obese will soon be seen as a "rounding error."

      • And no, we can't explain what's different about CS that causes that -- so far, we can only measure the outcome.

        I think I can, sort of. If you're doing math homework, it typically only takes you a few minutes - if that - to complete a problem. If you're doing CS homework, and you're trying to figure out a solution to a problem beyond "Hello world!", it might take you a few hours to complete it, even if it's less than 100 lines of code.

        • The flaw in your hypothesis is that the problem manifests itself before the students even get much past "Hello World!"

          If you read the article I linked, you'll find that CS students' success is highly predictable based on the results of a pre-test -- administered before the class even starts. Programming, fundamentally, is about synthesizing a mental model of the system and then applying it to solve a problem, and many people just can't do that.

          Actually, maybe that's the answer! Unlike every other subject t

      • Beyond the most simplistic programming it becomes fairly abstract. The most concise description I have ever heard about a computer is that it is the dumbest machine that has ever been created. Once turned on it has to be told how to do everything and the instructions are very small like load the content memory location 0x47D809A7 into register ax. Granted this was an assembly language teacher but even higher level languages require thinking in very small steps that may not be apparent why one needs to do so
    • I guess it all depends on how it's presented as a subject. I remember "shop class" and having almost no interest in it. However, decades later, I'm now building a 3D printer and I have a desktop CNC mill. It's not that I hate working with my hands, it's that I lack the skills to make the things I want to do. Computer-controlled tools allow me to enjoy "shop class".

      If all they try to teach kids is .NET, frameworks and things like that, most of them will get bored really fast, even those who might have a good

    • by Jaywalk ( 94910 )

      can you explain what about CS is different from maths, English, physics, chemistry, biology, foreign languages, history, wood working, underwater basket weaving etc etc?

      It's all about the concept of a core subject. A core subject is a basic set of skills on which other skills are built. Math and English are core subjects because there's very little you can do in life without using them to some extent. Wood working and basket weaving are not because they are secondary skills which are built on core skill

      • It's all about the concept of a core subject. A core subject is a basic set of skills on which other skills are built. Math and English are core subjects because there's very little you can do in life without using them to some extent.

        But most of the subjects taught are non-core subjects then. How is CS different from, say, Physics? You don't need to do physics to do CS, and you don't need CS to do physics. We do also teach wood shop.

        So, why wood shop but not CS? Or why chemistry but not CS?

  • by Himmy32 ( 650060 ) on Thursday April 09, 2015 @12:30PM (#49439491)

    I have not read too much on this, but listing these areas as core areas might have an opposite effect than intended. One provision of the NCLB act was that teachers need to be "highly qualified" and left that up to the states to decide what that meant. To my knowledge most states requirements for "highly qualified" teachers is that for "core subjects" they hold at least a bachelor's degree in that field.

    The outcome of this is that many of these classes could be dropped because a Math teacher who had a minor in CS would no longer be considered highly qualified to teach in that subject. By raising title of these subjects but not having any standardized testing on the subject would likely cause schools to drop those areas in order to keep the arbitrary percentage of "highly qualified" teachers teaching classes in order to keep funding.

    • To my knowledge most states requirements for "highly qualified" teachers is that for "core subjects" they hold at least a bachelor's degree in that field.

      That's not a federal requirement. At the federal level, the teacher needs a bachelor's degree, state licensure, and to demonstrate competency in the subject matter that they teach.

  • It means more work to design new courses, more certifications, and more areas of evaluation. Since teachers are a major part of system, you have to get them to buy in.
  • LOGO turtles - here we come!

    • Say what you will but that was a great way to learn the basics of programming as it made it fun for kids. I should see if the online Apple II emulator has logo writer (I think that is what is was called) and introduce my kids to it. The oldest one already likes playing word munchers on it.
  • by TechyImmigrant ( 175943 ) on Thursday April 09, 2015 @12:45PM (#49439661) Homepage Journal

    CS might be an economically important subject, but it's hardly core. It's a composition of math, electronics and engineering.

    Math is a core subject, but only once they quit with the "math = arithmetic, algebra, calculus" mantra in schools. Start teaching logic and inference.

    • CS might be an economically important subject, but it's hardly core. It's a composition of math, electronics and engineering.

      And then, in my considered opinion and experience, it becomes more than the sum of its parts.

      I've known mathematicians who couldn't be taught to code. I've known electrical engineers who couldn't even remotely be taught to code. I've known engineers who made awesome coders. I've known people with no formal education who were awesome programmers and mathematicians in their own right

    • It's a composition of math, electronics and engineering

      I disagree. Most people who program don't have the slighest clue how to use a transistor or what a capacitor really does and likewise they wouldn't know a linear system if it ran up and bit them on the leg!

      • That's programming, where you don't need to know how the lower layers of a computer work. But a full computer typically includes chips, capacitors, FR4 substrates, instruction sets, operating systems, buck-boost converters, and a whole bunch of algorithms.

        So the whole field of CS is large. Programming intersects with mathematical computer science, but it's hardly the whole of computer science.

        Take a look on the research on formally correct side channel mitigation in logic circuits or Yao garbled circuits fo

  • A "core" subject has multiple levels and is the basis for other knowledge. Basic math is fundamental to many jobs; you can't be a plumber or an architect without it. Ditto for reading and writing. If you excel on one of these disciplines you may need advanced skills; like trigonometry in math or learning the difference between composing a novel or a newspaper article if you're a writer.

    Programming doesn't qualify for the same sort of focus. You can operate a computer without programming it the same way
  • C.Sci is a good career, it's not the only career. I would rather teach kids:

    • Optimum health management, including providing healthy food and needed daily exercise during school time
    • Balancing checkbooks, with some mock loans/saving money for stuff in school shop and so on
    • Basic relationship/child raising skills.
    • Politics and being a good citizen
    • Protecting environment

    If kids have basic life skills, they will also choose their own career paths wisely. By all means, offer a great C.Sci elective and ensure it's ava

    • Funny, I got all those things in my middle school and high school classes. The difference was I actually paid attention in class. Daily aerobics and later ballet in high school? Check. Balanced lunches, even if they were overcooked? Check. Balancing a checkbook? That was 7th grade math class. Check. Basic child raising skills? 12th grade anatomy class. We carried around bags of sugar for six weeks, kept a "feeding" journal, and would fail if our bag of sugar had tears or leaks at the end (child abu
      • by PRMan ( 959735 )

        I got all those things too. Let's see how it worked out:

        Health management/healthy food - They introduced me to the food pyramid, which is loaded with carbs and makes America fat. And I've since learned that it's so politically motivated that it cannot be trusted. I gained 100 lbs over 10 years trying to follow that crap (and got high blood pressure and nearly diabetes) and then I threw it out, started cutting my carbs and lost 70 lbs in 9 months and am not taking any medications anymore. Massive fail.

        • we carried an egg around, which is surprisingly effective in my opinion

          ... or, if you were smart, you just hard-boiled it the first chance you got. Thats way, even if the shell cracked, you didn't end up with a gooey mess to tattle-tale on you. You also told others to micro-wave theirs if they were in a hurry, both for the lulz and to thin out the herd (but mostly for the lulz).

  • But perhaps not too late.

    Rather than teach CS as a separate subject, teach the other subjects in the context of CS.

    If the goal is to train the kids today for the jobs of tomorrow, there will be CS elements to every job, even if it is just using computers.

    Case in point: Wife was an attendance clerk at the local school. When the new attendance tool was rolled out, it came with no pre-defined reports.
    Clerks were sent to a class, and then were expected to write their own reports.

    Did not turn out well for a lot

  • ...but is likely a necessary skill to do well in a computer science course of study, as well as engineering, physics, etc.

  • Funnier if the 4th thing is actually R [wikipedia.org]?

  • The problem with this is the same problem that's happening with elearning. Administrators see a cool video by a vendor and decide that's going to be the magic bullet. Then, you have 3rd graders learning Java. Then in middle school, they switch to VB. Then, in high school, it's back to Java again. Teaching kids to code like this is going to make them hate everything. Furthermore, good luck finding teachers for this- there's already a massive teacher shortage, and far too few math and science teachers, much l
  • Nobody wants to hire a mediocre programmer.
    Forcing everyone to learn programming in school is going to result in a lot more mediocre programmers, and almost no increase in good programmers.

    You know what would make a difference?
    Getting all the students who have basically no chance of learning to program out of the class, so the rest of us don't have to deal with them.

  • We should add "medical doctor" to the Core curriculum. This would be a great way to cut down on the ever increasing costs of medical care. Since everyone is now a doctor who can self diagnose their own issues and self prescribe their own cures, we will have successfully cut out a huge middleman in the medical industry. Thank god I thought of this. I am off now to tell congress of the plan going forward.
  • I am not going to discuss whether CS should or shouldn't be a "core" subject in the schools. Rather, I am much more disturbed by the idea that Congress, in D.C., wants to decide the "core" subjects for every school system in the US.

    First and foremost, regulating education is not a function entrusted to the Federal Government. It is a quintessential State issue. It is not the kind of problem (unlike, say, national defence or immigration) which must be solved at the national level.

    I think that many people

  • by markdavis ( 642305 ) on Thursday April 09, 2015 @07:53PM (#49443139)

    Please show me in the Constitution where the Federal government has the power to impose laws about education.

    Oh yeah, there is this:

    "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

Ya'll hear about the geometer who went to the beach to catch some rays and became a tangent ?

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