Herbert Joins Bipartisan Group of Governors Working to Increase Access to K-12 Computer Science Education

Press Release – January 31, 2019 – Governors Asa Hutchinson (R – Ark.) and Jay Inslee (D – Wash.) welcome Governor Gary Herbert (R – Utah) to the Governors’ Partnership for K-12 Computer Science, a collaboration among states focused on advancing legislation and policy to expand access to high school computer science courses, develop high-quality K-12 computer science learning standards, and provide comprehensive professional learning opportunities to teachers and school leaders.

Governor Herbert announced his commitment to joining Governors’ Partnership for K-12 Computer Science today at the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit. In his 2019 budget proposal, Governor Herbert set aside set aside $3.9 million for grants, administered to school districts, to implement computer science in every school by 2022. Additionally, Governor Herbert has directed the Talent Ready Utah Center to create a committee that will build a four-year state strategic plan for computer science as well as oversee the grant funding strategy and distribution.

“Computer Science is important to the success of Utah’s economy. In order for our economy to continue to grow and prosper, we need more students to take computer science courses,” said Governor Herbert. “In Utah, we have just under 5,000 open computing jobs, and, in 2015, we only had 366 computer science graduates. I am committed to addressing the root cause of this problem and ensuring every student in Utah has the option to take computer science courses in school.

“Governor Herbert is such an incredible leader with a clear vision for expanding access to computer science education for all Utah students,” said Aaron Skonnard, co-founder and CEO of enterprise technology learning platform Pluralsight, Inc. “Joining the Governors’ Partnership for K-12 Computer Science Education further demonstrates his commitment to computer science education at the state and national level and will be an important platform to advance our goal of having computer science education in every Utah school by 2022.”

In Utah, the average salary of a computing job is $84.395, significantly higher than the average salary in the state ($46,460). The existing open jobs alone represent a $419,191,852 economic opportunity in terms of annual salaries.

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