Computer Science: Only a small fraction of Mississippi students are pursuing it

Across Mississippi, there are more than 28,000 high school seniors attending public schools this year. But in 2020 Advanced Placement test in Computer Science Principles–a course designed to create “leaders in computer science fields” and engage those “traditionally underrepresented in computer science” — only 314 students–less than 10% of that number—took the test. (56 of them were minorities). 

 If Mississippi plans to compete for new tech jobs effectively we should be spending more time and resources towards developing in-state talent. Our kids need more exposure to technology! “I think we need to do more to expose kids to these things earlier.” That is why BeCloud host kids for MindCraft coding camps.  We want to encourage kids to consider computer science as early as possible. More than 7% of superintendents and principals say offering computer science is just as important as offering subjects like English, Math, History and Science.  I agree.

In a neighboring state Tennessee, for example, 16% of AP Computer Science Principles students were African American, and 11% were Hispanic/Latino. In Alabama, 10% of those taking the AP computer science test for that course were African American and 7% were Hispanic/Latino. The numbers in Georgia were higher than the ones in Mississippi: 6%, 3%, respectively. 

Parents ask your school administrators what options they have available for computer science courses. 

James Phipps 26 March, 2022
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