By: Dr. Kip Glazer and Dr. Sonal Patel


Since the wide release of Generative Artificial Intelligence (Gen AI) in November 2023, there has been a plethora of discussions on the future of computer science (CS) education. Some have wondered whether CS education is even necessary any longer in light of the speed which GenAI can generate codes. If an article such as “So Much for ‘Learn to Code” is any indication, we might assume CS education is no longer needed in college. After all, using automated tools such as GitHub CoPilot can certainly save so much time that several tech companies have announced layoffs of a large number of employees. According to the media, all coding can now be done by chatbots! 

However, as Equity Fellows of the Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA), we believe that the expansion of effective CS education for all is needed now more than ever before. In this time of excitement and uncertainty, CSTA is both leading the charge to incorporate AI tools into CS education while debunking a fatalistic view of the future of the CS field. We firmly believe that a stronger educator voice in the age of AI is critical as the pressure to quickly implement AI into the education system intensifies. 

History of Education Technology Implementation

The conversation around rapid AI implementation in education feels rather familiar to many educators. Some argue that this is no different than several previous education technology (a.k.a. edtech) fads that never fulfill their promise. 

In his 2018 article “Twenty Years of Edtech,” Martin Waller enumerated four distinctive reasons why many edtech innovations over time have failed. First, edtech tends to focus more on the tech part rather than the education part. Second, many underestimate historical learning from both the success and the failure of a particular tool that functioned similarly. Third, rather than designing specifically for education, many edtech tools are re-purposed, often incorrectly and hastily, for education. Finally, many edtech developers ignore the complexity of the educational field in other fields, such as banking or media industries that use technologies. 

Regardless of their background in CS and AI, school leaders and educators are (and should be) concerned about this occurring once again as more and more AI tools are being introduced to the marketplace and the education field. Various so-called AI companies are promising the silver bullet to fix education once again, which is why we believe that educators’ and school leaders’ voices are needed to ensure that we do not repeat our past mistakes in edtech implementation. 

Definition and history of AI

Before we transition to what we mean by centering the educators’ voices, it is important that we define what we consider to be AI. According to the recent White House Executive Order, (EO) AI is defined as “a machine-based system that can, for a given set of human-defined objectives, make predictions, recommendations, or decisions influencing real or virtual environments,” and Gen AI is defined as, “the class of AI models that emulate the structure and characteristics of input data in order to generate derived synthetic content. This can include images, videos, audio, [code], text, and other digital content.”

As school leaders and CSTA Equity Fellows, we want to be clear that AI is not new. AI has been used in niche applications such as intelligent tutoring systems, automated grading, or even early warning systems. For example, we have had voice recognition that generated synthetic contents (i.e. Siri or Alexa giving answers that they found online) for years now. As such, the belief that the use of AI is going to replace CS education or teachers in the classroom is not only absurd but unrealistic. In fact, we believe that an increased investment in CS education is crucial, given the growing need for AI literacy throughout the education system.

Increased importance of CS Education in the age of AI

As educators and school leaders, we want to acknowledge that chatbots can code much quicker than a person, which is one of the benefits of automation. Just as producing words quicker doesn’t necessarily improve the quality of one’s writing, being able to code faster doesn’t mean that the outcome will be better. In fact, we have seen erroneous products being mass-produced by AI generators. 

We must remember that CS education goes beyond teaching students to code. In fact, coding skills often are secondary to CS education. Research has shown that engaging students in creative programming activities is the best way to help them develop computational thinking (CT) skills. In the age of AI, integrating CT skills and CS education into their curriculum has become more important for our students than ever before. Because it allows us to equip students with the ability to understand and critically evaluate AI-generated content, address bias issues, ensure transparency and accountability in AI systems, protect student data and privacy, and ultimately, shift the focus towards human-centered computing and learning.

What can CS teachers do? 

As Equity Fellows and practitioners, we believe that the conversation around AI in education and CS education must center educator voices. Two ways that we can achieve the goal are: 

(1) Advocate for a clear and comprehensive policy on AI in education for the protection of all participants in the education field.

(2) Focus on developing and implementing a human-centered CS curriculum.

1. Advocate for a statewide AI policy grounded in research

In a recent Scientific American article, Lauren Leffer referred to a study that showed that “the participants who received the fake AI suggestions went on to incorporate the same bias into their future decisions, even after the guidance was no longer offered” (Leffer, 2023). Of course, one can argue that being exposed to incorrect information can have a lasting impact on the learner. However, a number of research on misinformation in media indicates that AI-generated content holds additional weight and influence on the learners. 

Therefore, we as educators must demand that all States create strong policies and regulations to address issues related to AI, including bias, transparency, and accountability. Although the White House has created the Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights, we argue that each state should create a robust policy on the proper use of AI for its own education system that includes guidelines for ethical and responsible use of AI technology. 

We recommend that each state ground its policies on AI in the EO that focuses on five key principles: (1) safe and effective systems, (2) algorithmic discrimination protections, (3) data privacy, (4) notice and explanation, and (5) human alternatives, consideration, and fallback. These principles underscore the importance of developing and using AI in a manner that respects individual rights and societal values, which should allow for extensive discussion in CS  classrooms.

2. Focus on developing and implementing a human-centered CS curriculum

In the realm of human-centered computing and learning environments, CS educators play a pivotal role in shaping the narrative around AI integration. Emphasizing a focus on human-centric approaches, as stated by the California Department of Education’s Learning with AI, Learning about AI, all educators should be involved in guiding students to explore the ethical dimensions of AI and its impact on society. For CS educators, this mandate leads to additional obligations of developing and implementing a technical curriculum of coding to create just and ethical algorithms based on ethically collected data sets.  

While all educators should use existing curriculums, such as Common Sense Media’s AI Literacy Curriculum that encourages discussions on responsible AI usage, CS educators must teach their students to learn to align technological advancements with human values. This emphasis not only equips students with the necessary technical skills but also instills in them a sense of responsibility and awareness regarding the societal implications of AI, moving beyond simply coding. 

To achieve that goal, we recommend that CS educators consider doing the following:

  1. Become familiar with common terms and definitions and explicitly teach them to the students.
  2. Review reputable publications, such as the Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Teaching and Learning and its Core Messages, and share the learning whenever possible.
  3. Implement curriculums created by and for teachers, such as Code.Org
  4. Create professional learning opportunities for fellow CS educators and share resources via organizations such as CSTA.

In light of the rapid advancements in AI and its widespread integration across various sectors, including education, we believe in the growing importance of CS education. With the evolution of technology, there is a parallel need for educational methods to evolve, such as incorporating CT and human-centered computing into all school curricula. Educators, particularly CS teachers, are key in helping students navigate the complexities of AI and its effects on society. Adopting a human-centered curriculum that is anchored in ethical standards and policies is crucial for all students, and CS teachers must spearhead this vital educational shift. Our future depends on it!

Disclaimer: This post was written 100% by human authors, not generated by an AI.


1 Korducki, K. M. (2023, September 26). So much for “learn to code.” The Atlantic.

2 Gleeson, C. (2024, January 10). Amazon Is Laying Off Hundreds Of Twitch, Prime Video And MGM Studios Employees. Forbes.

3 Weller, M. (2018, July). Twenty Years of Edtech. EDUCAUSE Review.

4 Executive Office of the President. (2023, October 30). Executive Order on the Safe, Secure, and Trustworthy Development and Use of Artificial Intelligence. The White House.

5 J. R. Carbonell, “AI in CAI: An Artificial-Intelligence Approach to Computer-Assisted Instruction,” in IEEE Transactions on Man-Machine Systems, vol. 11, no. 4, pp. 190-202, Dec. 1970, doi: 10.1109/TMMS.1970.299942.

7 Leffer, L. (2023, October 24). Humans Absorb Bias from Al-And Keep It after They Stop Using the Algorithm. Scientific American.

8 The White House. (2023, November 22). Blueprint for an Al Bill of Rights / OSTP | The White House.

9 California Department of Education. (n.d.). Learning With AI, Learning About AI – Computer Science.

10 Common Sense Education. (2024). AI Literacy Lessons for Grades 6–12. from

11 Ruiz, P., & Fusco, J. (2024). Glossary of Artificial Intelligence Terms for Educators.

12 U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Technology. (2023). Artificial Intelligence and Future of Teaching and Learning: Insights and Recommendations.

13 U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Technology. (2023). AI and the Future of Teaching and Learning: Core Messaging Handout.

14 (2024). Artificial Intelligence.

About the Authors

Dr. Kip Glazer
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Dr. Kip Glazer is a proud Principal of Mountain View High School in Mountain View California, home of Google and in the heart of Silicon Valley. She is a 2023 CSTA Equity Fellow and a member of the Engage AI Practitioner Advisory Board. Prior to becoming a principal, she was a classroom teacher, technology coach, and administrator. As an immigrant and English-language learner, she is passionate about leveraging learning technologies to augment learning opportunities for historically underserved populations of students. For nearly a decade, Kip has worked with a number of learning science researchers in connecting research to practice in the K-16 education space. In recent years, she participated in several AI-related webinars hosted by Educator CIRCLS, a project funded by the National Science Foundation. She also participated in the webinar hosted by the US Department of Education’s Office of Education Technology at the launch of the official report, “Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Teaching and Learning.” She has written several book chapters and blog posts on AI, game-based learning, and the proper use of education technology. She is an experienced writer, speaker, and presenter. You can find her on LinkedIn.

Dr. Sonal Patel
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Dr. Sonal Patel is a CSTA Equity Fellows and a Program Manager for Computer Science and Digital Learning at the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools. She works with her team to build, plan, and facilitate the design, development, and implementation of equitable educational technology and Computer Science programs. Sonal continues to work closely with educational partners to help lead county and state-wide efforts in broadening K-12 access and participation in Computer Science. In addition to this, she is working alongside the California Department of Education to expand awareness and understanding of how artificial intelligence can transform K-12 education. Dr. Patel’s dedication to the advancement of educational technology and her deep commitment to fostering inclusivity have resulted in a remarkable impact on the educational landscape in San Bernardino County and beyond.