Apple’s big push into education has reached Chicago.
The technology giant said Tuesday that Chicago plans to incorporate the company’s coding program into its public school and city college systems.
As part of the rollout, Chicago schools and city colleges will teach students Apple-sanctioned coursework related to Apple’s homegrown Swift programming language beginning in spring 2018. Apple’s Swift coding language, introduced in 2014, is pitched as the preferred way for outside developers to create apps for Apple products like iPhones, iPads, and Mac computers. Apple calls its education program “Everyone Can Code.”
Apple (AAPL) said it sought input from Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel as well as local school and city college officials about the project, which would reach “nearly 500,000 students.”
“We’re thrilled to be working with our friends and partners in the great city of Chicago on this initiative,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a statement. “Together with Mayor Emanuel, Chicago Public Schools and City Colleges, we look forward to helping students learn Swift and build the skills they need to thrive in today’s workplace.”
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An unspecified number of Chicago public schools will debut Swift Coding Clubs, which are after-school programs intended to teach children the fundamentals of the coding language. Chicago-based community colleges, on the other hand, will offer more sophisticated classes about app development and the Swift coding language intended.
“Coding is not just a critical skill in today’s economy, it is another outlet for students to expand their horizons and explore their creativity,” Emanuel said in a statement. “Everyone Can Code is an incredible opportunity for young people across Chicago to learn the language of the future, sharpen their minds and develop the skill sets needed to compete and win in the 21st century.”
Apple has been introducing coursework related to its Swift programming language in U.S. school systems and city colleges for some time. In August, Apple said 30 community colleges including, several in Austin, Tex., would offer Apple-related coding courses this fall.
Apple is also pushing its Swift curriculum worldwide. In November, the company said about 20 universities outside of the U.S. would offer Swift-related courses, including the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Australia.