Harrisburg School District Incorporates Computational Thinking Into Its Curriculum To Empower Students With Skills For Future Careers
Harrisburg School District Implements “Ignite My Future in School”- an Initiative by Tata Consultancy Services in Partnership with Discovery Education - Reinforcing its Computer Science and STEM Focused Courses
HARRISBURG, PA | NEW YORK, NY, November 15, 2017 – Tata Consultancy Services, (TCS), (BSE: 532540, NSE: TCS) a leading global IT services, consulting and business solutions organization, and Discovery Education, the premier provider of digital education content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, take their Ignite My Future in School platform to Marshall Math Science Academy in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. As early implementers of this system, Harrisburg teachers will receive professional development, educational resources and year-round support to integrate computational thinking into core subjects such as math, sciences, arts, and social studies. In turn, students will learn foundational skills for 21st century careers – across industries – through this transdisciplinary approach.
“I'm thrilled to learn that the Harrisburg School District was one of 10 districts throughout our Nation to be chosen to participate in the “Ignite My Future in School initiative,” said US Representative Scott Perry (R-PA). “Today, less than 25 percent of U.S. schools teach computer science related courses; however, in less than five years, one million more jobs will require computer science skills. ‘Ignite My Future in School’ will allow Harrisburg School District teachers to learn the fundamentals of transdisciplinary learning and help prepare our students for careers of the future.”
Marshall Math Science Academy will serve as the initial center for the district initiative, adding to the area’s burgeoning computer science movement. Harrisburg recently hosted its first-ever commonwealth data hackathon. The event had technology professionals, designers, entrepreneurs, and students, create prototypes and apps to improve citizen services and drive innovation.
Pennsylvania possesses a clear demand and interest in the field of technology, and aims to increase enrollment in STEM-specific majors by 10,000 at state-supported postsecondary institutions by 2020. Additionally, by 2018 there will be approximately 300,000 Pennsylvania jobs that require STEM skills or content knowledge, and over the next ten years, 71 percent of new jobs will require computer science skills. Ignite My Future in School hopes to address the disparity by cultivating relevant skills for 21st century job opportunities, particularly the new digital economy, Artificial Intelligence, machine learning, and the Internet of Things (IoT).
Local teachers and parents will have the opportunity to apply computational thinking during the Day of Discovery and Community Night at Marshall Math Science Academy. Seventy-five teachers from across Harrisburg schools will experience a full day of professional development in computational thinking strategies for their classrooms. In the evening, families will engage in hands-on learning experiences with DE educational experts.
“Computer science knowledge is crucial in today’s job market, and it’s vital that students acquire necessary technical skills to ensure a successful future,” said Balaji Ganapathy, Head of Workforce Effectiveness, TCS. “Our partnership with Discovery Education will enable educators in Harrisburg to increase learning and engagement for students not only in computer science, but core subjects as well.”
On a National level, Ignite My Future in School has a goal of engaging 20,000 teachers and one million U.S. students by 2021. As a first step towards this goal, TCS and Discovery Education announced that 10 U.S. school systems across the country – with more than 6,700 teachers and 194,000 students – joined the effort as early adopters of this transdisciplinary approach in a five-year educator training and learning commitment to help empower middle school teachers.
These select schools will experience the unique opportunity to learn and apply computational thinking through an annual free day of professional development for educators and community night for parents. TCS and Discovery Education have also launched an online program, TECHademy, which will engage teachers nationwide in an exclusive, cost-free, virtual professional development experience that includes curriculum resources, eLearning courses, webinars, and more. These resources are aligned to national standards, as well as the recently launched K-12 Computer Science Framework.
Ignite My Future in School builds on TCS’ robust community initiatives that have inspired more than two million young people in STEM education and careers. TCS is a founding partner for two national mentoring initiatives in the United States, US2020 and Million Women Mentors. Its flagship student engagement program, TCS goIT, has engaged more than 12,000 middle and high school students across 56 cities in the United States and Canada with hands-on experiences in computer science, inspiring them towards tech careers in all sectors. Moreover, TCS is part of the CSforAll Consortium and has national partnerships with NCWIT, NPower, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, CECP, National 4H Council, Boys Scouts of America, and Boys and Girls Clubs of America.
About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states, and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at DiscoveryEducation.com. Stay connected with Discovery Education on social media through Facebook, follow us on Twitter at @DiscoveryEd, or find us on Instagram and Pinterest.
About Tata Consultancy Services Ltd (TCS)
Tata Consultancy Services is an IT services, consulting and business solutions organization that delivers real results to global business, ensuring a level of certainty no other firm can match. TCS offers a consulting-led, integrated portfolio of IT, BPS, infrastructure,engineering and assurance services. This is delivered through its unique Global Network Delivery Model™ (GNDM), recognized as the benchmark of excellence in software development. A part of the Tata group, India’s largest industrial conglomerate, TCS has over 389,000 of the world’s best-trained consultants in 46 countries. The company generated consolidated revenues of US $17.6 billion for year ended March 31, 2017 and is listed on the BSE (formerly Bombay Stock Exchange) and the NSE (National Stock Exchange) in India.
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