News Article

Amazon Funding Computer Science Education at Elementary Schools in Hillside Public Schools, Impacting 1,650 Students

June 21 2023 · By BootUp Team

Hillside Public Schools is New Jersey’s first district to join Amazon Future Engineer’s expansion to more than 500,000 elementary students nationwide

Funding from Amazon Future Engineer delivers teacher professional development and curriculum from BootUp PD, a nonprofit professional development provider specializing in high-quality computer science concepts, practices, and standards for elementary teachers and students

Amazon Future Engineer aims to bring high-quality computer science access to students from underserved communities and groups currently underrepresented in tech - from childhood to career

Hillside — June 21, 2023 - Amazon and Hillside Public Schools today announced that Amazon is funding computer science education at four schools in the district, impacting 1,650 students, many from underserved communities and groups currently underrepresented in tech, as part of its Amazon Future Engineer program. Hillside Public Schools is now part of Amazon Future Engineer’s target to bring computer science to 500,000 elementary students by 2025.

Amazon is working with BootUp PD, a nonprofit professional development provider, specializing in elementary school education, to bring computer science to each school. BootUp provides teachers with the tools they need to bring engaging coding lessons to their students. High-quality computer science education for elementary school students during their school day is a critical piece of Amazon’s “childhood to career” approach because it helps bridge equity skill gaps at an age when students are just beginning to formulate ideas about their futures.

“The Hillside Board of Education and district leadership are thrilled to team with Amazon Future Engineer and BootUp to provide the students and staff of Hillside Public Schools with this exciting opportunity to expand their Computer Science and STEM content knowledge. This three-year partnership will expose students to high-quality, rigorous instructional activities that inspire them to explore evolving career pathways. The partnership will also create awareness and access to postsecondary education, especially for students marginalized in Computer Science and STEM. By attempting to reduce gender and racial disparities in the Computer Science and STEM fields and positively demonstrating to students how the fields can change their economic trajectory, I contend that this partnership will have a positive academic and economic impact on the lives of our Hillside students. As Superintendent of Schools for Hillside, I actively seek resources and collaborative opportunities to promote academic excellence and create engaging learning environments that challenge our students to be critical, analytical thinkers. I am confident that this partnership will meet the standards of excellence established by the district and increase our students’ interest and engagement with Computer Science; with the goal of our students becoming the next generation of architects for our technology ecosystem.” said Superintendent Erskine R. Glover.

"We are thrilled to see Hillside partnering with Amazon in bringing computer science education to their elementary schools,” said Union County Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “By joining Amazon Future Engineer's nationwide expansion, Hillside Public Schools is taking a significant step towards ensuring that their students, some who may not have had the opportunity, have access to high-quality computer science resources and teacher professional development. This initiative aligns perfectly with the County’s commitment to preparing our students for future success and building a county full of inclusivity."

“Amazon Future Engineer is thrilled to hear how teachers continue to go above and beyond to reach young students and pique their interest in computer science,” said Victor Reinoso, Global Director of Amazon’s philanthropic education initiatives. “We are committed to offering high-quality curriculum, professional development, and benefits to support educators as they help their students build life-changing skills that leverage computer science and coding to bring their dreams to life, no matter what career they choose to pursue.”

"This is the first ongoing national sponsorship focused on implementing equitable, sustainable computer science education that is available to all students district-wide," said BootUp’s Chief Executive Officer Savita Raj. “We prepare educators and support districts in building long term programs that provide equitable access to computer science opportunities for all students. Through this partnership, we will build a community of curious, innovative, thoughtful learners who are ready to most brilliantly impact our futures.”

Amazon’s commitment to Hillside Public Schools is part of the company’s ongoing efforts to increase access to computer science/STEM education across the country, primarily through Amazon Future Engineer. In addition, Amazon has donated more than $20 million to organizations that promote computer science/STEM education. Already in New Jersey, there are more than 200 schools are participating in the Amazon Future Engineer program.

About Hillside Public Schools

The Hillside Public Schools is a small, urban school district in Union County, New Jersey. The district enrolls approximately 3,100 students in Pre-Kindergarten through twelfth grade. Hillside Public Schools consists of seven schools, one early childhood center, three elementary schools, two middle schools, and one high school. After several years of organizational changes in Central Office, Hillside Public Schools has a leadership team that is stable, cohesive, and committed to strengthening the district's core values. A primary, essential value of Hillside Public Schools is that all students become critical thinkers who can successfully navigate their ever-changing environment. The district is keenly aware that to create students who are critical thinkers and learners, the district’s strategic plan must include how partnerships with higher education and business institutions are value-added and leverage varied resources for the students and staff. Hillside Public Schools commits to creating career and college pathways that give all students a world-class education and foundation to propel them into prosperous futures. Striving to ensure classroom practices meet students' learning styles, Hillside Public Schools is reimagining the teaching and learning environment.

About Amazon Future Engineer

Amazon Future Engineer is a childhood-to-career computer science education program intended to inspire and educate millions of students from historically underrepresented communities globally, including hundreds of thousands of students in the U.S. each year. Students explore computer science through school curriculum and project-based learning, using code to make music, program robots, and solve problems.

About BootUp Professional Development

BootUp is a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit specializing in sustainable, multi-year, district-wide elementary computer science professional development focused on coding, computational thinking, creativity and problem-solving. Through ongoing professional development, model teaching, and instructional coach support, BootUp prepares participants to become confident, innovative educators who engage students with meaningful, project-based, open-ended, age-appropriate coding activities.

Sponsorship applications are being accepted at: www.afebootup.smapply.org.

Hillside Public Schools Press Conference
Computer Science Grant
New Jersey
Hillside Public Schools

⟨ Previous Article

BootUp PD Selects Savita Raj as New Chief Executive Officer
AboutCurriculumContact Us
Say Helloinfo@bootuppd.org(414) 212-5037
©2020 - 2024 BootUp PD, Inc. All rights reserved. BootUp is an IRS Section 501(c)(3) organization.
Unless otherwise indicated, all materials on these pages are copyrighted by BootUp PD, Inc. No part of these pages, either text or image may be used for any purpose other than personal use. Therefore, reproduction, modification, storage in a retrieval system or retransmission, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical or otherwise, for reasons other than personal use, is strictly prohibited without prior written permission.
Powered by Contentful
Terms of ServiceCookie PolicyPrivacy Policy