WEST CHESTER – Six school districts in Chester County will receive $210,000 in total state funding to better prepare students with computer and technology skills, state Senator Andy Dinniman announced today.

“Over the next decade, 71 percent of new jobs in Pennsylvania will require employees to use computers and new technologies,” said Dinniman, who serves as minority chair of the Senate Education Committee. “By investing in high-quality technology education and training educators in STEM and computer science instruction, we can prepare students for the in-demand careers that will drive our economy and our workforce of the future.”

The $35,000 targeted grants, which come through the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s PAsmart initiative, will be used to expand computer science classes and teacher training. Recipients are as follows:

  • Avon Grove School District.
  • Coatesville Area School District.
  • Great Valley School District.
  • Owen J Roberts School District.
  • Phoenixville Area School District.
  • Tredyffrin-Easttown School District.

The grants come as part of more than $5.7 million in state funding awarded to 163 K-12 Schools across the state under the Pasmart program. They are used to help schools introduce and expand computer science programming and to provide educators from pre-kindergarten through grade 12 with training to teach computer science. The recipients have prioritized expanding access to computer science for underrepresented students, such as students of color, girls, low-income students and students in rural communities.

The targeted grants represent one component of PAsmart initiative, which will provide $20 million to bring high-quality computer science and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education in elementary, middle, and high schools, and professional development for teachers.

As a result of the 2018-19 Targeted grants, more than 1,100 teachers have received training to teach STEM and computer science.