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Westwood High School considers new Advanced Placement Computer Science expansion courses

Participating schools will offer two college-level computer science classes, with materials and teacher support provided by a state grant.
Updated: May. 11, 2021 at 5:37 PM EDT
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ISHPEMING TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WLUC) - Michigan is expanding Advanced Placement Computer Science (AP CS) courses for high school students. Schools in the Upper Peninsula are looking to implement the program in their classrooms.

Patrick Klumpp is a freshman at Westwood High School, where he’s currently taking a cybersecurity course.

“I like to think about it and kind of work through it in my own way,” Klumpp said. “It’s just fun to me.”

The NICE Community School District is looking to give students like him more opportunities through the AP Computer Science expansion.

“We’re really doubling down on computer science instruction and helping our kids explore that career path,” said district superintendent Bryan DeAugustine. “It’s an up-and-coming field obviously, and we know that a lot of our kids are interested in seeing what that’s all about.”

The course expansion is part of a $15 million pilot program through the nonprofit Code.org. Participating schools will offer two college-level computer science classes, with materials and teacher support provided by a state grant.

DeAugustine says the courses would complement existing programs at Westwood.

“We want to give our kids every opportunity that they can get before they leave high school and go out there, either into the world of careers or college or whatever path their life takes them on,” he said.

While Klumpp enjoys computer science as a hobby, he sees it as a potential career path as well. He says he’s open to taking the AP courses in the future.

“There are so many things now that use computing, like cybersecurity, and so many companies that are needing people that know how to do stuff with computers,” said Klumpp.

There is no timeline for implementing the program yet, but DeAugustine hopes students will be able to take the AP courses sometime next school year.

For more information on the AP CS expansion, click here.

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