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Legislature passes computer science workforce bill

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A bill to bolster computer science education in Missouri has passed the General Assembly and will become law with the governor’s signature.

Senate Bills 894 and 921 by Sens. Doug Libla and John Rizzo will incentivize more Missouri high schoolers to take computer science courses by allowing those courses to count toward graduation as a math, science or elective requirement. The legislation also sets forth a process to establish rigorous new computer science standards and curriculum guidelines, creates a certification for computer science teachers, creates a fund to help train computer science teachers, and brings an online program to Missouri that showcases STEM careers to students.

The bill passed with bipartisan support.

“Computer science is a mainstream skill in today’s economy. By passing this legislation, the Missouri General Assembly is helping prepare our state’s workforce for good-paying jobs available right now,” said Daniel P. Mehan, President and CEO of the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry. “Passing this legislation was a great bipartisan effort. I’d like to thank the bill sponsors Sens. Doug Libla and John Rizzo, and House sponsor Rep. Travis Fitzwater, for spearheading this issue and the leaders of the House and Senate for making this bill a priority this session.”

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