HAMILTON (Mercer County) — Gov. Murphy is pressing ahead with a “Computer Science for All” initiative for New Jersey high school students.

During a visit to Steinert High School on Wednesday, Murphy announced $2 million in grant money will go to several public high schools in the Garden State to help equip students with the computer skills they’ll need to understand modern technology and be ready for the jobs of the future.

The governor said to help reclaim New Jersey’s place in the innovation economy, “we set aside $2 million to initiate computer science for all, so more high achieving students can have access to a strong computer science curriculum.”

The FY 2019 State budget includes $2 million to expand advanced computer science courses at high schools across New Jersey.

He said developing computer science opportunities and attracting more female and minority students to student computer science “are how we ensure that our efforts today, to reignite the innovation economy will resonate far into the future, this is how we create a New Jersey where innovative companies will want to come.”

Murphy added “it begins here in our terrific public schools."

"We need to make sure that they have every single tool for their future success," he said.

Murphy said all public schools are being invited to apply for grants to help them start, and expand advanced computer science offerings.

“We aim for this grant program to open classrooms for a diverse crop of new computer science students while supporting faculty professional development," he said.

State Senator Pat Diegnan D-Middlesex, the chairman of the State Senate Education Committee, said expanding access to computer science in New Jersey high schools is off the charts important.

“Everywhere you go you run into employers that are looking to hire folks but they don’t have the necessary computer skills," Diegnan said.

He stressed knowledge of computer science is extremely valuable, no matter what kind of work you do.

The governor also announced the current Department of Education’s Office of Educational Technology “will be reconstituted as the Office of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, otherwise known as STEM.”

He said the mission of the STEM office will be to implement a world-class curriculum, and oversee subjects like computer science and cyber security.

Murphy also said New Jersey is going to join the Governor’s for K-12 Computer Science partnership.

“It’s a bipartisan coalition of my fellow governors, committed to expanding access and funding for computer science education," Murphy said.

You can contact reporter David Matthau at David.Matthau@townsquaremedia.com.

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