CSforALL's Response to COVID-19

Accessibility Pledge Text

CSforALL + AccessCSForAll

As members of CSforALL and computer science education stakeholders, we are committed to the collective goal of rigorous, inclusive and sustainable computer science for all US K-12 students, including the approximately 7.5 million students with identified disabilities*.

Content Creators

(organizations that develop curricula, content, tools and devices for CS education)

As creators of computer science education content and tools, we pledge to explore how we can provide our K-12 computer science content in accessible ways so that all students, regardless of disability, can learn using our content including:

  • Assessing our content and tools for accessibility and usability by students with disabilities using established accessibility standards.
  • Creating an improvement plan and setting a target date to fill the identified gaps and meet accessibility standards.
  • Including accessibility guidance among our facilitator education tools and resources.
  • Making accessibility a priority in the development of future CS education content and tools.

Program Providers

(CS education programs, delivered both in and out of school, such as educator professional development providers and organizations, museums and others that prepare educators; and youth-serving organizations, clubs, camps, competitions, etc.)

As providers of computer science education programs, we pledge to explore how we can provide our K-12 computer science experiences in accessible ways so that all students, regardless of disability, can learn including:

  • Acquiring materials, curricula, and technologies that are accessible.
  • Reviewing program content and tools for accessibility and usability for students with disabilities.
  • Creating an improvement plan and setting a target date to fill the identified gaps and meet accessibility standards.
  • Including accessibility guidance among our facilitator education tools and resources.
  • Making accessibility a priority in the development of future CS education programs by proactively planning for learner variability.
  • Providing an explicit statement on accessibility in program information resources, and/or the ability for prospective students and their families to indicate accommodation requirements when enrolling.

School Districts and Regional/State Education Associations

(Organizations that oversee or support the implementation of CS education in schools.)

As providers of K-12 formal education, we pledge to promote and support the inclusion of students with disabilities in K-12 computer science education in the communities we serve, by:

  • Acquiring materials, curricula, and technologies that are accessible for students with both physical and cognitive disabilities.
  • Working with leadership and disabilities staff (e.g. special education teachers and administrators, school psychologists, occupational and physical therapists, etc.) to collaboratively identify inclusive CS education pathways, materials, and pedagogies.
  • Identifying systemic barriers to inclusion, such as scheduling as students can sometimes be pulled out of computer science for intervention services, and devising plans to ameliorate those barriers.
  • Offering professional development for special education teachers and support staff to prepare them to support students in computer science coursework.
  • Offering professional development for general education teachers in supporting students with disabilities in CS education, including the use of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) principles in lesson planning and development, the use of assistive technologies in CS education, and other high-leverage practices for supporting all learners.
  • Clarifying data collection tools to measure changes in instructional practices related to UDL, guiding professional learning needs assessment, and measuring school-wide changes

Researchers

(Organizations or individuals that engage in research and evaluation of the effectiveness of computer science education efforts, in or out of school.) As researchers of K-12 formal and informal computer science education, and considering that disability intersects with all other demographic features such as gender, race, ethnicity, and socio-economic status, we pledge to consider disability as an underrepresented population in our research projects including:

  • When possible, in gathering demographic data on research participants, including educators, we will include disability status alongside other demographic variables being collected.
  • In formulating research questions we will consider the impact of what we are studying on students with disabilities.
  • In developing and studying pedagogies and technologies for teaching computer science we will consider the impact of these pedagogies and technologies on students with disabilities as part of the study.
  • When collaborating with K-12 colleagues, advocate for the inclusion of students with disabilities in CS educational research opportunities.

Investors

(Organizations that provide philanthropic support or invest in K-12 computer science education content, programs, or institutions.)

As investors in computer science education, we pledge to include criteria that address the inclusion of students with disabilities in the evaluation process for our funding decisions including:

  • Is the program or content delivered accessible to students with a broad range of disabilities?
  • If not currently accessible, is there an improvement plan in place to address accessibility?
  • Do the program materials and assessment tools explicitly address accessibility?
  • Does the program proactively seek input from accessibility experts and perspectives of advocates such as parents?

*Students with disabilities covers a large range including students with cognitive disabilities of various kinds (such as learning disabilities, autism, intellectual disabilities), and various physical disabilities (such as blindness, deafness, and mobility/dexterity limitations).

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