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Photo Caption:  Hale Kula Elementary School is the only school in the state that will receive a $10,000 technology donation from, during Computer Science Week, Dec. 9-15.

December 6, 2013
Hawaii State Department of Education

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii (Dec. 6, 2013) -- A commitment towards introducing computer programming to students has garnered a financial award for Hale Kula Elementary School, here.

The central district school is the only school in the state that will receive a $10,000 technology donation from, during Computer Science Week, Dec. 9-15. is the organization behind a global event designed to boost public awareness about the industry of computer programming and coding. The so-called "Hour of Code" encourages people around the world to engage in computer programming events and activities.

The Hour of Code global event is being held in 163 countries with more than 3 million students participating. Coding has been identified as a 21st century skill coveted by all industries.

"We want to be sure … that our students receive the knowledge, skills and strategies to help them succeed in this technological world," said Jan Iwase, principal, Hale Kula Elementary. "This award will help us in ensuring that our students are exposed to the world of computer programming."

Governor Neil Abercrombie and Hawaii Department of Education Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi will participate in Hale Kula's Hour of Code, Dec. 13, which will include the presentation of the $10,000 check by and a brief session on computer programming with Hale Kula students.

As part of the school's commitment, all of its teachers and its student body have signed up to participate in learning to code.

About 99 percent of Hale Kula's 900 student enrollment are military dependents. The school is in its third and final year of a grant from the Department of Defense Educational Activity to implement a one-to-one blended learning pilot program for fourth- and fifth-grade students, where they virtually access their curriculum for half of the school week.

Computer programming jobs are growing three times faster than the rate that students are entering the field. While computer coding is not taught in most U.S. schools, other countries are offering computer programming and/or coding in their schools.