About 45 people braved the near zero temperatures and traveled from Kansas City, St. Louis, Bolivar, and Springfield for this special legislative day in Jefferson City to promote computer science education reform in Missouri. I'm extremely proud that 16 of the 45 people in attendance were from Southwest Missouri:
- Emily Denniston, Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce
- Alex Greiwe, Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce
- Deb Wilson, O’STEAM
- Jason Arend, Eagle Speak
- Bob Graham, Audio Acoustics
- Tom Douglas, JMark Business Systems
- Tim DeClue, Southwest Baptist University
- Andy Yohn, Product Lead, Duck Creek Technologies
- Kurt Theobald, Classy Llama
- Jonathan Hodges, Class Llama
- Lisa Perkins, CS teacher at Humansville High School, Humansville, MO.
- Robin Robertson, CS teacher at Republic High School, Republic, MO and SWMO CSTA Vice President
- Brad Sterling, Technology Director for Bolivar Public Schools and strong supporter of K12 CS Ed.
- Doug Starkey, Technology and STEM Education Director for Camdenton Public Schools, and high school APCS teacher.
- Andy Yohn, product lead and co-founder of Duck Creek Technologies (an insurance software company headquartered in Bolivar, MO which employs around 1000 people around the world, including a few hundred in Bolivar).
We met with the following legislators:
- Lt. Governor Mike Parsons
- Rep. Mike Stephens
- Rep. Elijah Haahr
- Sen. Jay Wasson
- Sen. Bob Dixon
- Sen. Sandy Crawford
...and ALL showed strong support for a statewide framework for bringing computer science courses to all K-12 schools in Missouri. We are hopeful that this will be the year where progress is made on this front. The legislative session is just beginning, and much...or little, depending on the political landscape...can happen between now and the end of May.
Wherever this legislation goes this year, we appreciate the efforts of the KC Tech Council, code.org, and, most importantly, YOU, our MATA members.
If your business or organization is looking to connect to the technology community of southwest Missouri, MATA is a great place to start.