In 2013, for the first time ever, PyCon will be holding a Python Education Summit. This summit will be an invitation-only gathering of teachers and educators from the many venues that support the teaching of programming in Python - schools, colleges and universities, community based workshops, online programs and government. These constituencies differ widely in resources and constraints, in methods, and in goals and aspirations, yet are all working to address the same issue - a lack of coding literacy - with the same belief - that teaching programming is needed and that Python is an excellent way to do that.
The goal of the summit is to bring together leaders from those diverse constituencies to learn more about each other's efforts and gain useful insight from them, to form connections that might foster future collaboration, to identify common issues and begin discussing ways to attack them, and to create an enhanced sense of unity, purpose and community among teachers of Python, wherever they might be. It is also our hope that the summit will serve as catalyst for the rest of PyCon to encourage even more interaction - hallway discussions, open spaces, lightning talks, and sprints.
Anyone attending this conference will gain a broader understanding of approaches and issues in teaching Python, will have the opportunity to contribute to their discussion, and will make contacts with other teachers of Python from across the community. A high school teacher might make contacts that allow her to enlist the support of a community based program while a community volunteer might gain useful guidance on curriculum design.
The education summit takes place on Thursday, March 14, the day before the main tracks of PyCon begin, so that summit attendees will be able to attend all of the regular talks.
The summit is scheduled to run all day, from 9:00 am to 4:30 pm, with breaks in the morning and afternoon and one hour for lunch. The morning session will tentatively include a keynote speaker and 3 panel discussions (audience participation encouraged) on the three general areas of the summit - engagement, curriculum and teaching. The afternoon session will be an unconference workshop where attendees can gather into interest groups to discus the issues raised in the morning.
Here is the tentative schedule:
9:00 - 9:15 Welcome
9:15 - 9:55 Keynote
10:10 - 10:45 Panel #1, "Curriculum"
10:50 - 11:25 Panel #2, "Teaching"
11:30 - 12:05 Panel #3, "Engagement"
1:15 - 4:30 Workshop/Unconference
In addition to active involvement in the process of teaching Python, the main expectation of attendees is engagement. The morning sessions will include panel discussions that encourage participation and the afternoon will consist of unconference style breakout sessions that demand it. So please come willing to learn, to teach, and to participate.
If you are interested in participating in this summit, please contact Naomi Ceder. Invitations will be subject to availability.