Last week, Dr. Abigail Joseph, middle school learning, innovation and design (LID) director, was appointed to the Computer Science Teachers Association’s Board of Directors. Together with the appointment Charity Freeman of Chicago’s Lane Tech College Prep High School, Abigail noted, this decision “is the continuation of a shift that CSTA is deliberately making to change the face of computer science education so that more marginalized groups are granted access to CS education and opportunities to participate in the world in which they live.”
Joseph has been involved with the CSTA since 2012, when she was a computer science teacher at the middle school, and co-founded the San Mateo County chapter in 2015. Last year, Joseph was part of the inaugural cohort of the CSTA’s Equity Fellowship, helping introduce computer science to teachers in other disciplines.
“I have been involved with various organizations help to encourage more non-CS teachers to learn about computer science and integrate it into their discipline,” said Joseph. “I have enjoyed working with teachers in that capacity and focused my Equity Fellowship project on developing professional learning opportunities to demystify computer science for non-CS teachers.” Working with the Connie L. Lurie College of Education at San Jose State University, Abigail gave computer science education workshops “to shift perspectives on what computer science is and why CS education is an equity issue that all teachers should care about.”
Joseph said she is looking forward to bringing awareness to equity issues in computer science education in her position on the board. “As a board member, I hope to bring voice to those that do not normally have the opportunity to share opinions about systems that create inequities and access in the field of CS and CS education,” she said. “It is important that a diverse array of perspectives are accounted for when systems and policies are created in any organization.”