October 17th, 2014
04:43 PM ET

What we're reading: Teaching 5-year-olds how to code

By Fareed Zakaria

“The U.S. has managed to cultivate a tech mecca in Silicon Valley in spite of its public-school system,” writes Sam Chambers for Bloomberg. “Because the country invented many of the technologies that are the foundation for today's hottest industry, it's a magnet for the world's sharpest and most ambitious. But the popularity of computing at U.S. high schools has been on the slide in recent years. In 2009, only 19 percent of students graduated with credits in computer science, down from 25 percent in 1990, according to a report from the U.S. Department of Education.”


“The challenges facing the nations of Mediterranean Europe are hard-wired into the structure of the European Union, but Germany has made them incomparably worse,” writes Harold Meyerson in the Washington Post. “Just as the euro has enabled Germany to boost its exports by making them cheaper than they’d be if the country had a currency that reflected the strength of its economy, it has also overpriced exports from the nations of Southern Europe, which cannot devalue their currencies to reflect their economic weakness. Having forfeited the ability to adjust their monetary policy to boost their economies, the Mediterranean nations have also been blocked from stimulating their economies fiscally by the European Union’s prohibition of budget deficits that exceed 3 percent of nations’ gross domestic products. Historically, those budget limits have been amended or waived during downturns, but German Chancellor Angela Merkel has continually insisted that the union impose austerity on nations whose economies required the very opposite: public works projects to boost employment and consumption, not to mention political stability.”

soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. chri§§y

    It ISNT the popularity of tech studies thats on the slide in this country! Its the education funding thats on the slide! One state in particular...Michigan! Governor Shynder cut the education fund by a billion dollars! That caused whole school districts to shut down. Some cities with more than 10,000 citizens have ZERO schools! Forcing children to bus to other cities to go to schools increasing those class sizes to increase tremendously! Not to mention how many children who may NOT be going to school at all! This is unforgivable in this country in this day and age!!!!

    October 20, 2014 at 10:51 am |
  2. chri§§y

    BUT....our esteemed governor now has the funding to build ANOTHER bridge to Canada. Of course its to be named after him! And we already have enough bridges to Canada so we really dont need another one. Oh and Michigans population is now on the down slide thanks to this clown!

    October 20, 2014 at 10:58 am |
  3. chri§§y

    I would like to give big props to the teachers in the districts that are overwhelmed with a tremendous increase of students in their classrooms! Awesome sauce particularly to the teachers in TAYLOR, MICHIGAN! You are doing a fantastic job and let no one tell you otherwise!!!!!!! 😉

    October 20, 2014 at 9:59 pm |
  4. chri§§y

    And to Governor Snyder...you could at least make sure these teachers get a big fat raise as they are now doing the work of two! You had no problem giving your own staff members raises that ranged from 82 to 90 percent and they dont work nearly as hard as these teachers! Time for YOU to get real!

    October 20, 2014 at 10:07 pm |

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