Partnership provides coding experience at Metcalf

Jeremiah Cone, a Thomson Reuters employee, works through a lesson. (Photo submitted)

Jeremiah Cone, a Thomson Reuters employee, works through a lesson. (Photo submitted)

Thanks to a partnership this spring with media and information company Thomson Reuters, students at Metcalf Junior High in Eagan got a six-week introduction to coding using the programming language Python.

Four Thomson Reuters employees introduced students to the language, walked them through practice exercises, and helped them build their own code in a weekly after-school class that began in April.

Metcalf Associate Principal Bill Heim, who provided the connections and legwork to get the partnership in place, said demand for the class was high, with 30 students applying for only 12 spots.

“I think this will be a class we offer [as part of the regular curriculum] before too long,” Heim said. “Coding is something that can be used everywhere. It’s like a universal language.”

With high participation and demand, another after-school version of the class will likely be offered at the school next fall.

“We are really fortunate to have this partnership with Thomson Reuters,” Heim said. “I’m excited about the opportunities this lets us provide to our students.”

The Metcalf coding class is the latest addition to programming opportunities at schools in Burnsville-Eagan-Savage District 191 that includes everything from coding clubs at several elementary schools to advanced computer science classes at Burnsville High School.

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