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New report highlights South Carolina’s achievements in computer science education

Code.org, the Computer Science Teachers Association, and the Expanding Computing Education Pathways Alliance, released the 2019 State of Computer Science Education report. The report shows South Carolina continues to be on the cutting edge in Computer Science policy and as a result, student participation is the fastest growing in the nation.

“South Carolina is committed to ensuring that our high school graduates are prepared for the jobs and careers available in our state and nation,” said State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman. “Computer science associated fields have become a fundamental part of nearly every workforce sector and I am proud that the policies that we have put in place in our state have led to unprecedented interest, growth and participation among our students guaranteeing a strong, skilled workforce for years to come.”

South Carolina has made great strides in advancing computer science in our schools and classrooms. The state’s accomplishments highlighted in the report include:

  • South Carolina is the only state in the country with a full year, one credit graduation requirement in computer science.
  • The percentage of high schools in South Carolina that teach computer science increased from 43% in the 2017–2018 school year to 69% in the 2018–2019 school year, the largest growth (+26%) of any state.
  • The fiscal year 2020 budget signed by Governor McMaster includes $500,000 for teacher professional development specifically for computer science.

In 2017, South Carolina became one of just six states to adopt computer science standards with the passage of the South Carolina Computer Science and Digital Literacy Standards for grades K-8 . In 2018, South Carolina adopted high school computer science standards making the standards span the full K-12 spectrum.

South Carolina has adopted seven of the nine policies recommended by the Code.org Advocacy Coalition.

The report also shows that 24% of Advanced Placement(AP) Computer Science exam test-takers were underrepresented minority students, an increase of 7% from the previous year. 29% of test takers were female, also an increase from the previous year. Students who take an AP Computer Science exam are more likely to take Computer Science courses in college. Additionally, states that have adopted more of the nine policies have a greater percentage of high schools teaching computer science, and also have an increase in the representation of female students taking AP computer science exams

The full report can be viewed by visiting this link.