Hutchinson announces group to oversee computer science implementation

Governor Asa Hutchinson has announced a 15-member task force to oversee the roll out of a requirement that all public high schools offer computer science courses.

Hutchinson said Friday that the group will research the needs of the state and recommend strategies for the implementation. The task force includes state agency leaders, academics, and CEO's. The Governor said the change will help make Arkansas more competitive and improve its workforce. The law signed by Hutchinson in February requires schools to offer the courses beginning in the 2015-16 school year.

The members of the task force are: Johnny Key, Department of Education Commissioner, Tom Chilton, Director of Technology Development for the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, Dr. Charisse Childers, Director, Department of Career Education, Brett Powell, Director, Department of Higher Education, Daryl Bassett, Director, Department of Workforce Services, Tim Atkinson, President, Arkansas Science and Technology Authority, Carl Frank, President, Arkansas' Computer Science Teachers Association, Gary Dowdy, President, Arkansas Academy of Computing, Andy Mayes, IT solutions teacher, Bentonville High School, Suzanne Mitchell, Executive Director, Arkansas STEM Coalition, Rasesh Patel, Director of Product Development, Acxiom, Dave Wengel, Founder and CEO, iDatify, John James, CEO, Acumen Brands, James Hendren, Technology Startup Consultant, and David Hopkins, Superintendent, Clarksville School District.