Welcome Washington CS Ed Community!!

Welcome to the November 2023 edition of the CSTA Puget Sound (aka "PSCSTA" newsletter.

This edition begins a reboot of the  newsletter we published briefly in 2021.   Coming out of the pandemic, we didn't have much to write about. We do now.
We hope you find our reimagined monthly newsletter useful and entertaining.   Please send any questions, comments, or ideas for future newsletters to
Please forward this newsletter to others you know in the CS education community.  This content and most links will also be publicly available on our website.   A few links designated by (👥) require a chapter membership to access our community content.   Not a member?   It's free.  Just visit our website.  

Of all the inventions of the last 100 years, the dry erase board has to be the most remarkable.

Data Corner: Girls in CS (WA):
Your Intro to CS class has 10 boys and 7 girls.   Are you doing enough to recruit girls into your CS class?
Comparisons are important here.   While we would all like to see something closer to a 1:1 ratio, this ratio is good compared to state and national data.
In 2021-22 Washington, the female CS enrollment percentage was 5.0%.  The male CS enrollment percentage was 11.6%.  Washington's female/male relative CSE participation rate was 43%.  Nationwide, the female/male relative CSE participation rate was 48%.
Member Spotlight:
Andrew Woodridge leads one of Washington's most impressive CS/STEM/Robotics programs at Olympia High School (Olympia SD, student population: 1,900).   He was also the first volunteer to help with the Washington Computer Science Education Extravaganza
Current courses:
  • Exploring Computer Science (2 sections – 60 students total)
  • 3D Design (20 students)
  • Robotics I  (30 students)
  • Robotics II (20 students) and Cloud Computing (6 students)
Andrew modestly describes the Exploring course: "Start with Logic Gates and Binary, build a Processor (ALU), a bit of Assembly, a big chunk on the basics of Python, simulations, and algorithms, a bit of SQL, and a Physical Computing project with members of our community with disabilities."
Another teacher, Hallie Meaney, teaches two sections of AP CS A (50 students) in addition to 2 sections of AP Calc and one section of Geometry
CS-related extra-curricular activities:
Most proud moments
Projects to help our community. Prototypes for a light to help those waiting for a bus to know if the wheelchair spots are taken, a magic mirror that will tell you if your clothes match, and a board to help kids at the playground communicate.
Biggest challenges
  • Reaching middle school teachers to help bring in more students from underserved populations
  • Getting various advisory groups working in the same direction.
  • Teacher for 20 years
  • Originally from upstate New York.  Cheers for Sabres, Mets, and Bills
  • BA in Technical Theatre with focus in Lighting Design
  • Initially hired as a Science teacher in Queens, NY as it was a shortage area. Eventually took over CS and received CTE certification
  • Moved to Washington to be near in-laws and help with children
  • Received CTE National Board in 2022

CSEd Week Dec 4 - 10, 2023
It's already November.  You have only 34 days until the start of CSEd Week 2023!
Perhaps you haven't made your CSEd Week plans yet.  Or perhaps you have CSEd Week activities, ideas, or plans you'd like to share.   In either case, click on the button below to access the community post for us to share our CSEd Week activities, ideas, and plans.   This newsletter will also summarize this post for our December issue. 
You can also kickoff CSEd Week with PSCSTA's virtual Birds of a Feather event on Saturday, Dec 2 from 10:30 AM - 12:00 noon.   
All are welcome. 

Free Washington Clock Hours Available 
Looking for CS PD beyond the basics?  Looking for CS PD to help you meet the most challenging issues - including equity - facing CS teachers today?  Looking for PD you can take at your own pace from the comfort of your own home?
PSCSTA provides Washington clock hours for the online PD offered by CSTA including Identity Inclusion for K-12 Computer Science Educators (12) and Teach Security: The Security Mindset (4 STEM).  These courses are free to CSTA+ members.
Not a CSTA+ member?  At $50 annually, it's an incredible bargain if you use even one of its benefits. Click here for more info.    
Partner Spotlight: Girls Who Code:
Girls Who Code is on a mission to close the gender gap in technology and to change the image of what a programmer looks like and does.
Schools can start a free Girls Who Code Club and receive resources, activities, community, and great SWAG for 3rd-12th graders to unleash their creativity, gain valuable coding skills, and imagine themselves as future tech leaders and innovators. Club members will learn how to build websites, applications, and games tackling important topics from climate change to cybersecurity and artificial intelligence.
Girls Who Code also offers virtual summer programs for high school students.  Look for the announcements in late winter.
In the 2022-23 school year, there were 125 Girls Who Code Clubs in Washington, serving over 1000 students. Over 200 students in Washington participated in Girls Who Code's Summer Programs in 2023  

For questions and the latest information on Girls Who Code in Washington, click on the community link below or contact Meaghan Flaherty.
What's a Chapter Advocacy Lead?
CSTA established the Chapter Advocacy Lead role in each chapter earlier this year.  I (Lawrence Tanimoto) see my role as the following: 
  • Advocate for computer science teachers 
  • Help teachers advocate for computer science education.
As a member of the national CSTA Policy committee, I became the chapter lead for the Puget Sound chapter and hope to serve you well in this role.  If you have any questions about being a CS Teacher in Washington, please feel free to e-mail me at or visit our (👥) virtual booster office hours.
The next few months may be very interesting as our legislature may soon discuss a bill to make computer science a Washington graduation requirement.  Visit the PSCSTA chapter advocacy lead community to stay tuned. 
Upcoming Events
PSCSTA Donate via Credit Card "Event"
Sep 01, 2023 - Aug 31, 2024
CS Endorsement Exam Prep Course for Washington State - Jan 2024 Cohort
Sep 30, 2023 - Jun 30, 2024
CSTA Birds of a Feather MeetUp For Washington
Virtual - Zoom link sent upon registration
Dec 02, 2023
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM UTC-08:00
View entire list

This year’s Fibonacci convention is going to be really special...

 It’s as big as the last two put together.

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