NEW YORK–Tata Consultancy Services, a global IT services, consulting and business solutions organization, and Discovery Education, a provider of digital education content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, announced the launch of Ignite My Future in School, a multi-million dollar and first-of-its-kind initiative to use computational thinking as a catalyst to transform education in the United States.
This program will enable educators, administrators and school districts to become ambassadors of a transdisciplinary approach and introduce computer science within the context of core subjects such as English, mathematics, social studies, science, and the arts, TCS said in a statement.
Ignite My Future in School will engage 20,000 teachers and more than one million students over the next five years, offered free of cost to them and their school districts. Educators will be provided with high quality professional development content that aligns with existing curricular requirements, enabling them to reach students in a compelling, hands-on manner to learn computational thinking concepts and apply such digital skills to solve real world problems. These instructional courses, content and lesson plans will give faculty the opportunity to try new teaching strategies in their classrooms that are designed to increase student engagement and achievement.
“Innovation occurs at the intersection of disciplines, and digital technologies are transforming every business around the world, from manufacturing and banking to retail and healthcare,” said Surya Kant, President, North America, UK and Europe, TCS. “Computational thinking and digital fluency are critical skills to succeed in careers across all sectors. Combining our industry knowledge, technology and mentors with Discovery Education’s educational resources, we can empower educators and schools to ignite the spark to prepare a whole new generation of students for brighter futures.”
Starting in 2017, Ignite My Future in School will be rolled out in school districts in 10 U.S. cities: New York, Chicago, Minneapolis, Santa Clara, Atlanta, Detroit, Dallas, Charlotte, Cincinnati, and Seattle. It will also be available across the U.S. through a virtual digital platform. Each market will have local learning leaders, who will promote teacher learning communities, connect participants and act as guides for cross-district learning and sharing. Moreover, more than 3,000 TCS employees will be actively involved as mentors and support the building of local coalitions in each city.
“Discovery Education is proud to join forces with TCS, a truly innovative and purpose-driven company, in support of our shared mission to empower students with the skills needed for success beyond graduation,” said Bill Goodwyn, CEO, Discovery Education. “Together, we are developing and delivering to educators dynamic digital resources that support the growth of critical computational thinking skills. We look forward to working closely with the talented TCS team to support the success of all learners.”
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, by 2020 there will be one million more computer science-related jobs in the U.S. than there will be students qualified to fill them. However, only one in 10 schools nationwide teach computer science classes. This multi-million dollar, multi-year initiative will bridge this gap by creating an educational journey with multiple touch points, from teacher training to partnerships with administrators, school leaders, etc., that empowers educators to play a critical, active role in preparing today’s and tomorrow’s students.
Ignite My Future in School builds on TCS’ robust global community initiatives that have inspired more than two million young people in STEM education and careers. TCS is a founding partner for two national mentoring initiatives in the United States, US2020 and Million Women Mentors. TCS’ flagship student engagement program, TCS goIT, has engaged more than 12,000 middle and high school students in the United States and Canada with hands-on experiences in computer science, inspiring them towards tech careers in all sectors.