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New grant will help bring computer science to local schools

It will pay to train teachers

For rural school districts, recruiting teachers that can lead classes in highly specialized or technical subjects is often an uphill battle.

A grant just received by the Prairie Lakes Area Education Agency will help ease the struggle to get teachers who can lead computer science classes.

The $68,300 award will pay for some area teachers to take computer science classes through Drake University in Des Moines and then share that knowledge with their students. The courses available through the grant are computer science methods, computer science in the elementary classroom and introduction to computer science.

The money comes from the state’s Computer Science Professional Development Incentive Fund.

Initiatives like this have been a priority for Gov. Kim Reynolds ever since she became lieutenant governor in 2011. In the ensuing years she has championed science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education programs.

Her goal, and that of everyone involved in the program, is to give Iowa kids the best possible education in the technical areas that include the good jobs of the future.

That is a worthwhile goal and well worth the investment of $68,300 in the local area education agency.

We’re pleased that our state is willing to make such investments. We hope area teachers will take advantage of this opportunity.

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