Today, the Chicago Board of Education (CBOE) voted unanimously to approve four updated graduation requirements.

Included in these are adjustments to Civics, Arts, and IB programs which will allow students to meet the requirements in more ways. Students may now earn both of their arts credits in the same discipline, allowing them to delve deeper into the artistic area of their choice. IB courses will now satisfy all requirements per content area, and we will broaden our Civics curriculum to bring quality service projects into the classroom.

And beginning with next year’s freshmen (the class of 2020), CPS will add a new Computer Science graduation requirement.

CPS has always been on the cutting edge of technology in the classroom. In 2013, we launched a first-of-its-kind Computer Science for All (CS4All) initiative designed to expand technology equity and access to students around the city. Making CS a graduation requirement is the next step along this path.

This is important for the future of all of our students: experts estimate that by the year 2024, the demand for computing skills will have created one million job openings. By arming them with these advanced skills, CPS is giving students a jumpstart on landing those jobs and pursuing STEM-focused careers.

Many of today’s students will end up in jobs that haven’t been created yet, but they still need to be ready. Building their technology skills will boost their confidence, inspiring them to go after those jobs and become the innovators of tomorrow.

For more information on the CS graduation requirement, take a look at our CS4All fact sheet.