Anne Jolly recently wrote a blog post on MiddleWeb about the inclusion of STEM and the arts in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). See the post in its entirety here: Will ESSA & STEM Make a Happy Marriage? Below is one of the paragraphs.

On December 10, 2015, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) became the USA’s new federal education law. Many experts and advocates proclaim this legislation as a huge win for STEM. The law, which mentions STEM over 100 times, provides new funding streams for K-12 STEM education and gives states and districts new directions and opportunities to support integrated science, technology, engineering, and math education.

The blog post outlines several of the provisions of the law, and discusses possible implications for school districts.

Computer Science in the State of the Union Address

In his final State of the Union address on January 12, 2016, President Obama included a statement about offering every student the hands-on computer science and math classes that make them job-ready on day one.

We agree that real opportunity requires every American to get the education and training they need to land a good-paying job. The bipartisan reform of No Child Left Behind was an important start, and together, we’ve increased early childhood education, lifted high school graduation rates to new highs, boosted graduates in fields like engineering. In the coming years, we should build on that progress, by providing Pre-K for all and — (applause) — offering every student the hands-on computer science and math classes that make them job-ready on day one. We should recruit and support more great teachers for our kids. (Applause.)


Many MACUL members are already on board with this idea. Coding clubs are being offered at schools across the state, new courses are being offered to students, and there is a “buzz” going on about makerspaces and computer science in the Michigan educational community. Several sessions will be offered at the MACUL Conference that relate to computational thinking and coding. Register for the conference today!  There are also pre-conference workshops offered on Wed 3/9 that relate to coding. See the list of pre-conference sessions here.