DATE:                  October 1, 2012
CONTACT:         Phil Giaramita, Public Affairs and Strategic Communications Officer
PHONE:              434-972-4049
 
Regional CoderDojo Academies Open to All Albemarle County Public School Students
 
(ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Virginia) – This summer, when Albemarle County Public Schools announced online its first CoderDojo Academy, the 50 available seats disappeared in a matter of minutes. Even when the program was quadrupled to 200 seats, the waiting list approached 900 students. Now, Albemarle County students from grades K-12 will have another opportunity to attend a CoderDojo Academy. Unlike the summer program, these academies will operate year-round.
 
The school division’s Chief Information Officer, Vincent Scheivert, announced today the following regional CoderDojo academies:
 
  • Saturday, October 6, from 9 a.m. to noon at Monticello High School
  • Monday, October 8, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Burley Middle School
  • Second and fourth Wednesdays of the month, beginning October 10, from 2:30 to 6 p.m. at Crozet Elementary School
  • Saturday, October 20, from 1 to 3 p.m. at Baker-Butler Elementary School
 
CoderDojo academies provide students with hands-on instruction and prototype opportunities for computer coding, web page development, programming (including the programming of robots), and the design and development of computer applications and video games. They bring together students, instructors, mentors and speakers from public and private organizations that are involved in the computer science field. There is no fee to attend the Albemarle County CoderDojos.
 
“The interest in our pilot program this summer far exceeded our expectations, as did the students,” said Scheivert. “An important part of the energy and value of CoderDojos is the collaboration among students who share ideas and help one another. We had students of all ages and levels of computer experience attend our pilot program during the summer, and what they were able to accomplish in one week was impressive,” he added.
 
The hope is that CoderDojo academies will broaden awareness and interest among students to become, in Scheivert’s words, “producers, not just consumers of technology.”
 
“Long-term, it’s expected that demand for computer science professionals will continue expanding at accelerated rates, as much as 30 percent. Earlier this year, we had more than 1,500 organizations seeking to fill more than 5,500 positions in this field, with Washington, D. C. being the top market,” Scheivert added.
 
Originally conceived in Europe, CoderDojos connect students and industry professionals by bringing business and engineering leaders into the classroom as mentors and guest speakers and by expanding internship and career opportunities they offer for students. The Albemarle County CoderDojos are among the first programs of their kind in a U.S. school division.
 
Any Albemarle County Public Schools student can attend a regional CoderDojo; however, students are required to register online in order to attend the academies. More information and registration are available at http://coderdojo.k12albemarle.org.
 
Registration for the Monticello High School academy (October 6) is available at:
http://mohscoderdojo.eventbrite.com
 

Registration for the Burley Middle School academy (October 8) is available at:
http://bmscoderdojo.eventbrite.com

Registration for the Baker-Butler Elementary School academy (October 20) is available at:

http://bbescoderdojo.eventbrite.com

 

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