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Equity in CS Education

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Equity in CS Education


This is a computer science classroom. Notice what this classroom looks like and who is in it. There are far more males than females and there are a few black or Hispanic students. This is a typical tech company. We see the lack of diversity that starts in the classroom translates here to a lack of diversity in the modern workforce. I didn’t really have a computer class. No, my school doesn’t offer computer science. I don’t even have a computer in my
house. And like all these other people like “Oh, this is so easy” and they
just want to get it done and not really help other people while I’m like yelling
out to them like “hey I don’t know how this thing works” so it’s more difficult. The teacher should do the thing more the more help for the people that don’t have computers at home than the people that do have computers at home. Nobody like encouraged me to do a program
thing with apps and stuff like that. For girls it’s more like “Oh, you’re
encouraged to do modeling or become a doctor” Do I know anyone that works with
computers? No, not really no. I don’t know adults that works with computer. I’ve told my mom about like the
class, but like she really doesn’t know that much because she really didn’t go to
college and like high school. She mostly uh mostly only went to sixth grade and
didn’t then go to school after that. “When you grow up do you think you’re gonna
work with technology in your career?” Not the field that I’m looking for. I don’t feel like I’m a technology person. I felt like I wouldn’t know anything and
I just felt like I would be left out because I felt like I was the only one
that wouldn’t know anything. They just classify you and I don’t know. I
don’t like being the norm. It’s important to distinguish between
equality and equity. Equality means everyone gets the same thing. Equity means each student
gets what he or she needs to succeed. There are a lot of factors that go into
equity, more than just gender and race. When you have a group of students in
front of you, you don’t necessarily know who has what experience or who is
combating what particular challenge in their life. You just have no idea. In my classroom, we do a lot of group work and what I see in those groups is students are able to come up with solutions that are diverse, just like them. I remind the kids that we are here to get education and I understand you know life can get rough, but this is your safe space. This is your time to be a kid
and you know to learn and just have some fun. If you have two people one person
who doesn’t know as much as one person and you give them both the same amount
of learning that’s not really fair. You have to teach one person more than the
other because they may not know as much. So they can’t reach the same level. So
fairness is not always fair because sometimes people need more and sometimes
you will need less. Sometimes the special needs student who you wouldn’t even necessarily think it would be appropriate for him or her to be in your
class, that’s the student that has the most patience and the most perseverance
and can really make a team stick together and say “Come on guys we have
this let’s look at this again”. That’s the student that will enable all of the rest
of them to be successful. It actually would be better for women and
men to be like working kind of like together on the computers and so they
can get more done with the power of two. Oh, oh, oh. It’s about to get real. It worked, it worked, it worked.

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