Fanning Elementary in Brea Olinda Unified School District will convert to a computer science magnet starting this fall where students will learn computer coding and other skills to better prepare them for current and future technology jobs.
The K-6 campus is the first in the district, and one of a growing number of k-12 campuses nationally, to set computer science as a primary focus of its curriculum.
In the magnet, teachers will engage students through block and text-based coding activities. Students will use Scratch (a programming language from MIT), Scratch Jr., Lego Bricks, and Lego WeDo to learn coding.
District officials pointed to the most recent federal Bureau of Labor Statistics that show computing is currently the fastest-growing, highest-paying and largest sector of new jobs in the United States as one reason for the decision to convert Fanning into a magnet. The bureau predicts that there will be over one million computing job openings by 2022.
District officials said computer science is now considered foundational for every child, regardless of career choice, as technology affects every field.
Brea Olinda Unified School District has partnered with Code to the Future to launch the computer science magnet. Code to the Future, the nation’s leading creator of immersive computer science curricula, will engage all students in every grade in technology and coding-based lessons integrated into daily instruction and core subjects.
District Superintendent Brad Mason said he’s excited about the program as it will transition students from being just players or consumers of technology to creators and innovators of it.
“Our goal is to expose students early in their education, creating a strong foundation for them to explore the computer science pathways we offer at Brea Junior High and Brea Olinda High School,” he said. “We believe this opportunity will help launch students to become leaders in the industry locally and around the world.”
Parents interested in learning more about the new Computer Science Magnet School at Fanning Elementary can call the district at 714-990-7800.