CS-CaVE builds on Computing for All Students’ Success (NSF DRL 1138512)

Computing for All Students’ Success (ComPASS)—also part of the CS10K initiative funded by the National Science Foundation—has executed these objectives (2012–2016):

  • Develop and evaluate pedagogy training for teaching Computer Science Principles (CSP);
  • Develop and evaluate content training and support resources for teachers with or without computing backgrounds to teach CS Principles, and
  • Foster growth and sustainability of a San Diego-area computing education community through the San Diego Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) chapter.

ComPASS originated with Dr. Beth Simon’s vision to create an entry-level high school computer science course using the block-based Alice programming platform. Dr. Simon (Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at UC San Diego) led the effort to develop and disseminate the new curriculum with research-based pedagogy entitled “Computer Science Principles: Expeditions through Alice.”

ComPASS partners include the San Diego Supercomputer Center and Computer Science and Engineering at UC San Diego, San Diego State University, the San Diego chapter of the Computer Science Teachers Association, and K12 schools throughout San Diego County. With final activities in 2016, ComPASS has successfully built local capacity for teaching CS Principles (CSP) courses and piloting the new Advanced Placement CSP course.

The success of Computer Science: Creating a Village for Educators derives from its history, building on Computing for All Students’ Success (ComPASS). CS-CaVE uses ComPASS educational resources (curriculum and pedagogy) and builds on the social and human capital that came from shared professional learning. Reflecting on the challenges of ComPASS, specifically the roadblocks in mounting new CS classes in high schools, CS-CaVE took on new goals.

CS-CaVE partners work to offer new CS courses in schools, while studying what helps and what hinders that ultimate goal. We put our primary focus on systemic change and sustainability of CS programs at the school district level. Schools and districts are complex systems with multiple constraints and competing priorities. While we work together to expand and broaden participation in CS across three school districts in San Diego County, we are documenting the complex territory of CS educational reform and how teachers and administrators navigate that territory in service of students and educational equity.