• Petitioning George C. Johnson

This petition will be delivered to:

Chair of University of California Board of Admissions and Relations with Schools;
George C. Johnson
Chair of University of California Academic Senate;
William Jacob
Chair of California State University Academic Senate:
Diana Wright Guerin

Make Computer Science Count for college admission in California

    1. Debra Richardson
    2. Petition by

      Debra Richardson

      Irvine, CA

California is known as a world leader in driving the digital age through computing and the information technology sector. Yet, few K-12 students have access to high-quality computer science education in the state. A key obstacle is that rigorous, college-preparatory computer science courses do not satisfy a core admission requirement, but only count as an elective, for either the University of California (UC) or California State University (CSU) system. We are seeking that computer science satisfy a core mathematics requirement for college admissions.

Computer science is driving job growth and innovation throughout California’s economy and society. By 2018, California will need to fill 517,890 computing-related jobs – about half of a total of 1.1 million STEM jobs. These occupations dominate “help wanted” ads, and computer science is one of the most lucrative and hottest degrees for new college graduates. Rigorous computer science courses develop students’ computational and critical thinking skills and teach them how to create—not just use—new technologies. This fundamental knowledge is needed to prepare students for the 21st century, regardless of their ultimate field of study or occupation.

The limited access to K-12 computer science education in California creates serious gender and equity issues for underserved minorities. Of all California AP Computer Science test takers in 2010-11, only 21% were female, less than 1% were African-American and only 8% were Latino (despite the fact that Latinos make up the majority of California’s public school students). A study by the Computer Science Teachers Association found that the most important factor in whether young women and students of color choose to take computer science is if it counts towards a high school graduation requirement.

Computer science courses do not currently count towards core high school graduation requirements in California. Moreover, neither the University of California (UC) nor the California State University (CSU) campuses count computer science as satisfying a mathematics or science requirement towards admission; at best computer science is treated as a college-prep elective. Given other academic demands, most college-bound students don’t afford themselves the time to take computer science, nor do students on a vocational pathway.

We are seeking to count computer science as a core subject requirement for admission to UC and CSU – in particular AP Computer Science as a mathematics “C” credit rather than merely as an elective “G” credit. This change would not require schools to offer computer science or require all students to study it – that is, high school graduation requirements would not change at this time – but would simply allow computer science courses to satisfy existing core college admissions requirements. This change would, on the other hand, encourage school districts to offer and students to take computer science and thereby become prepared with 21st century skills for our knowledge-based economy.

To learn more about making computer science count nationally, visit code.org.
For specific information about why it’s important to make computer science count in California, visit access-ca.org – the Alliance for California Computing Education for Students and Schools.

To:
George C. Johnson, Chair of University of California Board of Admissions and Relations with Schools;
William Jacob, Chair of University of California Academic Senate;
Diana Wright Guerin, Chair of California State University Academic Senate:
Computer science drives job growth and innovation in California. Help us make computer science count as a core subject requirement—rather than an elective—for admission to UC and CSU campuses.

Sincerely,
[Your name]

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Reached 9,000 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Elois Dixson OXNARD, CA
      • about 11 hours ago

      I have school aged grandchildren.

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    • Vicky Amador LA PALMA, CA
      • about 12 hours ago

      I believe my children should be exposed and learn computer programming at a young age

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    • Jamail Gibbs VICTORVILLE, CA
      • about 15 hours ago

      The knowledge of computer science is an essential tool to have in our evolving society

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Dan Presson MARYSVILLE, CA
      • about 18 hours ago

      Inherent in Computer Science (Code) are the disciplines of Mathematics and a Second Language.

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    • Fred Ybanez SAN JOSE, CA
      • 1 day ago

      I strongly believe, in these modern times, at least computer programming if not all of computer science, should be a core academic subject for primary and secondary education like math, language arts, and general science.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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