Computer Science for All

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Launched in 2015, Computer Science for All (CS4All) is an unprecedented public-private partnership ensuring all New York City students receive high-quality computer science education in elementary, middle, and high school. The public-private partnership represents an $81 million investment shared by the public and private sectors. 

In New York City, jobs that require knowledge of computer science are growing at twice the national average. Mayor Bill de Blasio said in 2016, “The city’s tech industry is growing, yet before Computer Science for All, fewer than five percent of our public school students had even the most basic skills necessary to apply for these jobs." 

Through CS4All, students are receiving equitable access to skills that can pave new college and career possibilities for students, particularly for female, Black, and Latino students often underrepresented in technical fields. At the same time, CS4All provides the technology sector with the opportunity to build a robust and dynamic talent pipeline. 

Computer science provides students with the unique opportunity of learning computational thinking, problem-solving, creativity, and critical thinking—all critical components of a student’s success. In addition, students who learn computer science improve 21st century skills that are important for life far beyond high school, including collaboration, communicating and creating with technology, and developing their understanding of technologies used daily. 

CS4All is well on its way to meeting the goal of bringing high-quality computer science education to every New York City public school student, K-12, by training 5,000 educators to teach computer science by 2025. 

Now completing its fourth year, CS4All has trained more than 1,900 teachers across 800 schools. In the 2018-19 school year alone, 160,000 New York City students learned computer science, more than the number of students in most school districts in the United States. With the implementation of CS4All, the number of students taking an AP CS exam in 2018 saw a four-fold increase – rising to more than 5,000 students, compared to only 1,137 students in 2016. In addition, New York City had a higher percentage of female, black and Hispanic students take the AP CS Principles exam in 2018 than did nationwide.

Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza said, "As we work to advance equity in schools across the City, we're expanding computer science education to a record number of students across the City – including students, schools, and neighborhoods that haven't had this access before." 

CS4All has also led the development of the CS4All Blueprint, an online academic and pedagogical guide for New York City educators to deliver rigorous and equitable computer science education in their classrooms. The Blueprint serves as the foundation for all of the professional learning trainings that teachers and school leaders receive through the CS4All initiative.

Students also receive engagement opportunities that deepen their exposure to computer science by applying their skills to solve real-life problems. This includes opportunities such as hackathons, internships, family and community events, as well as showcases, which celebrate student work in computer science. 

Students from The Young Women’s Leadership School of Astoria present at the 2019 Citywide Hackathon Final

Students from The Young Women’s Leadership School of Astoria present at the 2019 Citywide Hackathon Final

CS4All is being rigorously evaluated on implementation and teaching and learning outcomes by New York University’s Research Alliance for New York City Schools and the Education Development Center. The evaluation partners are conducting research on teaching practices, assessment tools, and model comparison for integrating computer science within schools.

CS4All is a public-private partnership with New York City supported by a range of foundations, corporations, nonprofits, families, and individuals. Major partners include the Solomon Wilson Family Foundation; Robin Hood; Math for America (MfA); Robin Hood Learning and Technology Fund; Verizon; Airbnb; IAC; Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc.; the Hutchins Family Foundation; the Carson Family Charitable Trust; and Paulson Family Foundation. They are joined by additional partners such as Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen, & Katz; Hearst Foundations; Brian O’Kelley and Elizabeth Rovere; the Siegel Family Endowment; the Ron Conway Family; The Rudin Foundation and the May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation; Howard and Wendy Lerman; Craig Newmark Philanthropies; Accenture; Arconic Foundation; ABNY Foundation; Rattner Family Foundation; and Capital One.

The Fund for Public Schools, CSNYC, and the Office of Strategic Partnerships at City Hall work together to develop and manage these partnerships.