February 03, 2021

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The West Virginia Department of Education congratulates seven schools for earning the College Board Advanced Placement (AP) Computer Science Female Diversity Award. These schools have earned this distinction for expanding female representation in AP Computer Science courses during the 2019-2020 school year.

A total of 1,119 schools are being recognized for reaching 50% or higher female representation in one of the two AP computer science courses, or a percentage of the female computer science examinees meeting or exceeding that of the school’s female population.

The seven schools recognized in West Virginia include:

Cabell-Midland High School Ona, WV
East Hardy High School Baker, WV
Elkins High School Elkins, WV
George Washington High School Charleston, WV
Lincoln County High School Hamlin, WV
Parkersburg Catholic High School Parkersburg, WV
Pocahontas County High School Huntersville, WV

In 2019, Governor Jim Justice signed Senate Bill 267 to expand access to computer science education to all students in all schools in the state. West Virginia was the first state to enact such legislation aimed at requiring all students to start their computer science education in elementary school and be exposed to a variety of computer science experiences throughout their K-12 career.

“Our state leadership has made it a priority to close the STEM gender gap in West Virginia. Every year, we have more schools recognized by the College Board AP® for their commitment to developing curriculum and creating career-tech pathways that allow for equal gender representation in our STEM fields. I am extremely proud of our school communities for continuing to increase accessibility and equity in computer science and other STEM-focused courses,” said W. Clayton Burch, State Superintendent of Schools.

According to national data, women only earn 18% of computer science bachelor’s degrees in the U.S. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects computer science research jobs will grow 19% by 2026, making it an ideal time for women to pursue computer science degrees. Additionally, the data shows that women are more likely to pursue computer science if they are given the opportunity to explore it in high school.

To view the full list of Computer Science Female Diversity Award recipients, visit https://apcentral.collegeboard.org/pdf/ap-cs-female-diversity-award-2020-school.pdf.

For more information, contact Christy Day at the West Virginia Department of Education Office of Communications at 304-558-2699 or Christy.Day@k12.wv.us.

Follow the WVDE on Facebook and Twitter.

Advanced Placement is a registered trademark of the College Board®. Used with permission.