Computer Science is Elementary

Computer Science is Elementary


Transform six high-poverty elementary schools into showcases of outstanding computer science education, including career exploration with employer partners, no later than the 2020-21 school year. The six Computer Science is Elementary Schools, plus Loess Hills Computer Programming School, also will serve as a statewide resource for Iowa educators by sharing their curriculum and community engagement strategies. Computer science is a new basic skill in the 21st century, so building a strong foundation early for all students is critical. This will ensure they are well prepared later in their personal and professional lives, including for a dynamic workforce where a growing number of jobs require computer science skills.


Six $50,000 awards will be made to selected applicants thanks to generous support from private-sector partners. One Computer Science is Elementary School will be located in each of the six regions established by the Governor’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Advisory Council: Awards must be used for a building with at least 40 percent of students eligible for free- and reduced-price lunch. Selecting a mix of rural and urban communities will be an additional consideration. Loess Hills Computer Programming School in Sioux City also will receive $50,000 to serve as a project resource.


School districts and non-public school systems (or stand-alone non-public schools) with an elementary building with at least 40 percent of students eligible for free- and reduced-price lunch are eligible to apply. The award must be targeted primarily to one high-poverty school, but other schools in the district or system may benefit, such as participating in computer science professional development. The awards, which will be announced by summer 2019, must be used by June 30, 2021.


  • January 2019: RFP opens
  • March 2019: RFP closes
  • Summer 2019: Selected schools announced
  • Summer 2019: Initial planning meeting for selected schools
  • Summer 2019 - Summer 2020: Planning and/or implementation year
  • August 2020: Final date for implementation
  • Summer 2020: Progress report

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