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For Immediate Release 08.11.2015

Gov. Asa Hutchinson Details Special Coding Event Saturday; Announces Latest Computer Science Numbers

LITTLE ROCK – Governor Asa Hutchinson announced the latest numbers regarding the state’s computer science initiative as the new school year approaches. To date, more than 1,300 students have signed up for the Essentials of Computer Programming course through Virtual Arkansas – a number Virtual Arkansas expects to grow. This summer alone, more than 130 teachers from all over the state have received training and professional development to teach computer science this year. The Arkansas Department of Education (ADE) will have full enrollment numbers for all courses, face-to-face and online, by mid-October.

As the Governor has stated previously, his goal within the next four years is to have 6,000 students taking computer coding classes each year, and, as the numbers suggest, we’re well on our way.

Governor Hutchinson released the following statement: 

“This is an exciting time in Arkansas education. Computer coding not only provides our students with an advantage over other states in the modern workplace, but the potential economic impact for Arkansas is limitless. If you’re a high school student, and you haven’t signed up for computer coding classes for this year, I want to personally encourage you to do so. Tell your counselor – tell a teacher. Be part of history, and help Arkansas lead the nation in coding!”


In addition to the updated numbers, Governor Hutchinson announced a special kickoff event for computer coding this Saturday at The Clinton Presidential Center. As part of the Annual “Head of the Class Bash,” Governor Hutchinson, in partnership with the AT&T Foundation, Clinton Foundation and Arkansas STEM Coalition, will host a free “Hour of Code” for students inside the Clinton Center. The Arkansas STEM Coalition has purchased 70 laptops, thanks to the AT&T Foundation’s generous gift of $25,000. These laptops will be used in “Hour of Code” events throughout the state over the next year. Details on Saturday’s event are below. For more information on the “Head of the Class Bash” or Arkansas STEM Coalition, click HERE and HERE, and join the conversation on Twitter by using #ARKidsCanCode.

“Head of the Class Bash”
Hour of Code Event
9:00 am – 1:00 pm
(Governor Hutchinson will be in attendance from 10:00 – 11:00 am)
Clinton Presidential Center
Great Hall
1200 President Clinton Avenue,
Little Rock, AR 72201

NOTE TO PRESS: Governor Hutchinson will hold a media availability at approximately 11:00 am, following the “Hour of Code” event.

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