computer science

Wow! District creates revolutionary computer science program for K-12 students

Indiana's MSD of Decatur Township launches innovative computer science pathway program for K-12 students; more than 200 students have enrolled, with that number expected to grow significantly.

Through a partnership with nonprofit Nextech and a collaboration with Apple, the Metropolitan School District (MSD) of Decatur Township in Indiana became the first school district in the state to implement a K-12 Computer Science Pathway.

MSD of Decatur Township is a diverse, nationally recognized school district that uses an innovative and personalized, small-learning community approach. The entire district offers multiple learning pathways to its students, encouraging a deeper, more applicable learning environment.

An Exciting, New Computer Science Program

This new program gives all district students the opportunity to develop a foundation of computer science knowledge and learn new approaches to problem solving, creativity and critical thinking in a world that is increasingly influenced by technology.

Throughout the Decatur Township school system, more than 200 middle and high school students have enrolled in three different computer science courses covering topics ranging from simple design, coding and strategies to more technical courses including app development, cyber security and database analytics.

That number is expected to grow, as the district’s nonprofit partner Nextech typically sees an average of a 580 percent increase in student enrollment over a three-year period.

How the Program Works

Nextech connects educators, nonprofits and entrepreneurs to deliver K-12 computer science education and work-based learning programs with the end goal of inspiring and enabling students from all backgrounds to pursue careers in technology. Nextech’s training program serves as more than just an educational workshop, and instead offers a continuous, year-long professional development program that provides teachers with the content, instructional strategies and real-world context needed to teach computer science.

Prior to this school year, nearly 150 Decatur Township teachers participated in Nextech’s training on a variety of computer science-related topics and were provided with additional content knowledge, instructional strategies, industry experience and resources to deliver the district’s new computer science curriculum to students. The training sessions required a rigorous 74-hour commitment where teachers learned the ins and outs of the curriculum and received a first-hand look into the computer science industry. In addition, Decatur elementary and middle school teachers underwent intensive training to learn how to seamlessly incorporate basic computer science skills into their existing curriculum and lesson plans.

(Next page: Leading the pack in computer science programs with more partnerships; innovative curriculum)

Sign up for our K-12 newsletter

Newsletter: Innovations in K12 Education
By submitting your information, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Want to share a great resource? Let us know at

eSchool News uses cookies to improve your experience. Visit our Privacy Policy for more information.