Tech Evolution: California’s Bold Move with Comp-Sci Graduation Mandate

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California is setting the stage for a significant educational shift with Assembly Bill 2097, proposing a mandatory computer science graduation requirement by the 2030-2031 academic year.

The bill, championed by Assemblyman Marc Berman, demands that every public high school in the state offer at least one computer science course by 2027. With 55% of California high schools currently lacking computer science instruction, the legislation targets the prevailing equity gap, especially affecting districts serving low-income students.

Berman emphasizes the urgency of preparing students for the digital workforce, particularly in a state like California, home to global tech giants. Despite being the cradle of innovation, the state faces the paradox of a significant skills gap.

In 2020, California had a staggering 45,245 available computer science-related jobs, paying an average of $153,544 annually. However, only 9,339 computer science graduates emerged in the same year.

Tech Evolution: California's Bold Move with Comp-Sci Graduation Mandate

The bill aims to rectify this disparity by aligning California with the national trend. While 27 states already mandate computer science instruction, California currently lags, ranking behind 40 other states in terms of high schools offering computer science courses.

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The legislation seeks to bridge this gap, ensuring that all students have equal access to essential computer science skills, regardless of their background.

The move mirrors efforts in other states, including Arkansas, Tennessee, and North Carolina, where computer science is already a requirement for high school graduation.

As the bill progresses, California aims to position itself at the forefront of tech education, empowering its students to contribute meaningfully to the digital landscape and global society.

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