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IDRA VisionCoders

IDRA VisionCoders™ Computer Science Course Will Serve 1,400 Students in San Antonio

IDRA & Texas A&M University–San Antonio collaboration will prepare teachers in seven school districts

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VisionCoders is a new eighth grade computer science course being developed by IDRA in partnership with Texas A&M University–San Antonio and 12 schools in seven Bexar County school districts. In this course, middle school students who are in at-risk situations will become software designers who create educational games for prekindergarten, kindergarten and first grade students. This field-initiated, research-based program is funded by the U.S. Department of Education.

IDRA’s profile of the VisionCoders target districts shows that adult employment trends in computer-related fields fall well below the national average of 7%. According to our findings, in the largely Latino ASPIRE geographic area, less than 1% of adults work in computer-related fields. But today’s fastest-growing careers are tech-driven from healthcare to telecommunications to aerospace. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects computer science research jobs alone to increase by 19% by 2026. And 67% of all new jobs in STEM are in computing.

VisionCoders students from the 12 participating ASPIRE middle school campuses will improve their computational thinking skills, computing identity and math skills. This requires having well-prepared and knowledgeable teachers, which is why VisionCoders integrates focused teacher training through a master’s level course through TAMUSA.

Participating school districts include East Central, Edgewood, Harlandale, Somerset, South San Antonio, South Side, and Southwest ISDs.

For more information, contact Dr. Stephanie Garcia, VisionCoders project director and IDRA’s STEM and gender equity education specialist at stephanie.garcia@idra.org.

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