Mountain View, California
According to a study released Thursday by Google and Gallup, standardized tests may be holding back the next generation of computer programmers. The Google-Gallup Searching for Computer Science: Access and Barriers in U.S. K-12 Education report (PDF) found that the main reason given by a “comprehensive but not representative” sample of 9,693 K-12 principals and 1,865 school district superintendents in the U.S. for their schools not offering computer science “is the limited time they have to devote to classes that are not tied to testing requirements.” Which makes one wonder if Google now views Bill Gates as part of the problem and/or part of the solution of K-12 CS education. The Google-Gallup report also explores race/ethnicity differences to access and learning opportunities among White, Black and Hispanic students — but not Asian students — a curious omission considering that Google’s own Diversity Disclosure shows that 35% of its U.S. tech workforce is Asian, making it by far the most overrepresented race/ethnicity group at Google when compared to the U.S. K-12 public school population. Which raises the question: Why would the Google-Gallup study ignore the access and learning opportunities of the race/ethnicity subgroup that has enjoyed the greatest success at Google? Not unsurprisingly, the Google-Gallup report winds up by concluding that what U.S. K-12 education really needs is more CS cowbell.
Why are Asians ignored? Because not ignoring them disproves the contention of the grievance industry, if you take them literally by taking their use of the word “diversity” almost literally, to mean any non-whites. It also goes to demonstrate a running theme in this space, that the definition of “diversity” is a moving goalpost that can be moved back and forth to fit whatever agenda is afoot. The only thing for sure is that cishet white gentile men can never be classified as diverse; everyone else is technically fair game for finding themselves on either side of the goalpost, and while blacks are rarely on the non-diverse side, if someone wants more “diversity” in terms of their non-white non-black minority group, blacks will be counted as non-diverse. Asians are the racial group over whom the goalpost keeps swinging back and forth most often.
As far as “more CS cowbell,” (clever), I happen to think that that’s part of the whole “skills gap” mania peddled by, among many others, Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg. If the schools are bad, then the solution is to fix the schools with Commune Core, but that, as Donald Trump would say, is thinking past the sale, because as long as we’re bickering over how to fix the schools, fix our supposedly bad schools, we are implicitly conceding the notion and implicitly confessing that the schools really are that bad, which is something I don’t believe. But, it is a confession that greases the skids for the Gates-Zuckerberg-et al. demand for increased or even unlimited H-1B visas, because we have to, we have no choice, “because the schools are that bad,” they’re so bad that they’re not producing any native born white Americans or anyone else that could do CSIT-STEM.