Fayette County schools are driven to push for innovation, and Bennett’s Mill Middle teacher Betia Bentley is among those leading the way. Bentley is one of 30 educators from 21 states selected to teach a pilot program in artificial intelligence (AI).
The program is a partnership between Microsoft and Code.org designed to give every student from elementary school to high school the opportunity to learn about AI.
“When deciding whether or not to apply for the pilot program, I considered the possibility to expose our students to an opportunity to participate in an innovative approach to learning and creating through AI,” said Bentley. “Our participation emphasizes the importance of student voice, ownership of learning, and the ability to make a positive impact in the lives of others through CS (computer science). We are grateful to Code.org, a global leader in CS training and development for students and teachers. I am certain this will be an amazing experience.”
The AI program is an extension of Code.org’s CS Discoveries curriculum where students work with datasets to create machine learning models that they can incorporate into their apps and explore how advances in new technologies require new ethical computer scientists to avoid bias and harm. Curated datasets help students better understand the real-world impact that these technologies have.
Bennett’s Mill Middle is the first county middle school to offer a Computer Science (CS) course, which is open to all grade levels. The AI pilot will be offered to current 7th graders enrolled in the CS course in spring 2021. Once the pilot program is complete, all grade levels will have the option to learn about AI through the Code.org platform.