Programming education startup Codecademy is announcing a new initiative with a stated goal “to double the number of high school girls studying Computer Science.”
Co-founder and CEO Zach Sims (pictured above) told me that this is the first “large scale initiative” that Codecademy has undertaken in this area.
Google.org has committed $1 million to the effort, with the money going towards classroom rewards from DonorsChoose.org. Each girl who completes a special Codecademy course (one that Sims said was created specifically for this partnership) will earn $125 in DonorsChoose rewards. When four students working with a single teacher complete the course, that’s worth an additional $500 for the teacher.
Beyond giving students a little more incentive to try out computer science, and giving teachers more incentive to steer those students towards Codecademy, the company laid out some other benefits in a blog post:
By working with DonorsChoose.org, we’re ensuring that the $1m in rewards that are disbursed help to improve access to technology and classroom materials. Every time a student completes a Codecademy course, they are helping to purchase new materials, like tablet PCs, textbooks, and more, for their classrooms. Not only are we better preparing our students, but we’re better preparing our classrooms as well.
Other efforts aimed at getting girls (and other underrepresented groups) involved with technology include Girls Who Code, Black Girls Code, and CodeNow. (That last organization recently became one of the relatively few nonprofits accepted into Y Combinator.)
[image via Flickr/LeWeb]