Hevesi Technology Education Initiative Implemented by New York State Education Department

In the 2013 legislative session, Assemblyman Hevesi introduced Assembly Bill A.6540, which required regulations authorizing computer science courses to count towards core curriculum content for secondary schools. This was followed by letters signed by Hevesi, and over one-third of the Assembly, to top administrators at the New York State Education Department (NYSED) requesting computer science courses become part of the core curriculum in all state public education institutions. The New York State Education Department took notice, and earlier this month issued new regulations and alerted all public schools in the State of New York that computer science courses are now eligible to count as a math or science requirement for graduation.

The new regulations adopted by NYSED will allow students to pursue and become proficient in courses that were previously not incorporated into the core curriculum of public education institutions. The inclusion of computer science in the baseline education of students is absolutely crucial to keep pace with the continued rise of basic computer literacy standards in the modern workplace. This change by NYSED will not only encourage participation in computer science courses but will dramatically increase a students’ competitive marketability in the technology sector in later years. This dramatic change by NYSED came after extended efforts by numerous public and private stakeholders, including partners such as Microsoft, Code.org, and State Senator Razenhofer (R-Erie County), all of whom advocated for the new regulations.

“Increasing access to computer science education sustains American innovation,” said Fred Humphries, Microsoft Vice President for U.S. Government Affairs. “New York leaders have made a strong commitment to allow computer science courses to count toward high school graduation requirements, which will help students learn the skills they’ll need to thrive in the 21st century economy. We applaud their leadership, and in particular the work of Assemblyman Hevesi, to usher through this important change.”

"Every student deserves the chance to learn computer science to access the best careers of the 21st century," said Hadi Partovi, founder and CEO of Code.org. "New York State – home to one of the largest student populations in the country – is removing a critical barrier that’s keeping computer science out of schools, and opening up new doors for every student to succeed."

“Proficiency in technology continues to play an increasingly important role in the modern workplace. It is crucial that we provide our youth the necessary skills to succeed in the twenty-first century” said Hevesi. “This announcement by the State Education Department is a huge step in the right direction that will help today’s students become part of the growing technology sector of our economy.”