Iowa working to get all students access to quality computer science instruction

December 22, 2020

By fall of 2022, every high school in Iowa will be required to offer instruction in computer science, and the state is making plans now to have its teacher workforce ready and a strong curriculum in place.

Legislators approved HF 2629 in 2020, a bill that created the new instructional requirements and established a Computer Science Work Group. This group began meeting early this year to develop recommendations on how to teach computer science and promote this subject area among K-12 students and families. Since 2017, Iowa has had a Computer Science Professional Development Incentive Fund, which prepares K-12 instructors to teach specific computer science courses and/or earn university endorsements to teach computer science. A total of $883,097 was awarded this past year to more than 167 school districts and nonpublic schools.

Under Iowa’s HF 2629, high schools must offer at least one computer science course by July 1, 2022. One year later, Iowa’s elementary and middle schools must begin providing instruction in at least one grade level.