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Advocacy Action in Ohio

Ohio is on the move, or at least we would like to think so.

During the eTech State Technology Conference in February we were able to present four sessions on topics in computer science education. The eTech coordinators worked with us to schedule all four sessions on the same day in the same room. We had approximately 250 people over the four sessions. Topics included teaching with Scratch, programming with phidgets (small electronic devices), CS Unplugged, and teaching graphics and web design.

There were many teachers who stayed to ask questions and gather resources. Many also took CSTA membership forms. One particular teacher confided that the only reason her district allowed her to come was because there were sessions directly relating to her job. Her school district paid for her to attend on the one day that we were presenting. We feel that is a huge success. As we talked to other teachers and as we continue to make new contacts we find that most computer science teachers are isolated. Our hope through things like the day at eTech and through working to develop a chapter that we are able to provide contacts and resources for CS teachers.

We have also begun the conversation about forming a CSTA chapter in Ohio. This conversation will continue on March 10th at our next informal meeting. We hope to use Skype (or something similar) and have a pod of cs teachers meet in the Cleveland and a second group in the Columbus area. The primary goals of this meeting is to determine the structure of our proposed chapter. We also plan to talk more about the lines of communication that have been opened with the Ohio Department of Education concerning awarding a math credit for APCS when 4 credits of math are required with the new Ohio CORE initiatives. We will also discuss upcoming events for CS students and teachers.

The Cincinnati area will also have a meeting on March 17th as scheduling issues prohibit running it in conjunction with Columbus.

As you can see things are happening in Ohio. If you are interested in being a part of any of our activities visit:

http://sites.google.com/site/compsciohio/

to see what is coming up.

Angie Thorne & Stephanie Hoeppner
CSTA Leadership Cohort

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