High School Teacher Receives Prestigious Fellowship
Sarah Ciras, a Landmark High School computer science teacher, was selected as a Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) Equity Fellow. She is one of 15 teachers across the country to receive the honor.
The CSTA Equity Fellowship involves collaborating with a group of 14 other educators around the US to work toward furthering an equitable landscape in computer science education. The goals are to bring an intersectional lens to the computer science education community, with the goal of making the field in general a more diverse and welcoming space for all.
“I'm so excited to have been chosen for the 2020 Computer Science Teachers Association Equity Fellowship so that I can further my mission of improving access and the quality of computer science education for students with learning disabilities (LD),” Sarah said. “I look forward to bringing this sentiment to a national platform alongside the rest of my cohort, making computer science more equitable for all.”
Sarah’s responsibilities as a fellow are:
- Share her expertise with CSTA members across the globe, including at the 2021 CSTA Annual Conference.
- Develop professional learning experiences, such as online professional development (PD) courses, webinar series, virtual conferences, chapter PD for the CSTA community.
- Collaboratively design and implement a project to promote equity in computer science education.
- Represent CSTA and the computer science education community.
“I am hoping this fellowship will provide more opportunities for students with dyslexia and other language-based learning disabilities in the field of computer science by furthering the truth that kids with LD can succeed with the correct supports,” Sarah said. “I think we all know that a homogeneous field does not allow for innovation, so bringing our students to the table will only make the field a better place to learn and work.”
A Longtime Advocate for Students With Disabilities
Sarah has been working with the University of Washington—Seattle and the group AccessCSForAll since 2015, pushing to bring more attention to accessibility of computer science for those with disabilities. She partnered with the university on a National Science Foundation Grant entitled "AccessCSforAll: Including Students with Disabilities in High School Computer Science."
The CSTA offers support, professional development, and resources to computer science teachers across the United States and Canada.