Merced County Times Newspaper
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Planada Superintendent Appointed to Computer Science Implementation Panel

Planada Elementary School District Superintendent Jose L. Gonzalez
Planada Elementary School District Superintendent Jose L. Gonzalez

Planada Elementary School District Superintendent Jose L. Gonzalez has been chosen for a key state panel by Gov. Jerry Brown.

Gonzalez, 44, of Atwater, was appointed to the Computer Science Strategic Implementation Advisory Panel in an announcement from the governor’s office on Feb. 9. The 23-member committee is expected to produce recommendations by July for the state Department of Education on widening computer science education opportunities for the state’s kindergarten through 12th grade students.

“I’m excited and honored with the opportunity,” Gonzalez said. “It’s not just about me or Planada; I am a voice for the San Joaquin Valley.”

The strategic advisory panel will meet twice a month in Sacramento until its report is done. The first meetings will be March 1-2.

Gonzalez said there are 1.4 million computer science jobs that continually go unfilled and this is the governor’s attempt to fill that pipeline. The new panel will craft developmentally appropriate curriculum for all grades.

At the lower level, basic computer thinking skills will be introduced. Eventually, California’s students will learn high-level coding and computer program-writing skills.

Gonzalez concedes increasing computer skills and filling a demanding career field won’t be an easy fix. The panel will look at developing a computer science credential for educators.

Gonzalez has been superintendent of the Planada Elementary School District since 2010. He served as superintendent-principal for the Ballico-Cressey Elementary School District from 2006 to 2010.

Gonzalez served in several positions for the Newman-Crows Landing Unified School District from 2003 to 2006, including principal of alternative education, principal of summer school and interim principal.

He was an English-language learner science teacher at Livingston High School from 1996 to 2003.

Gonzalez is a member of the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing, California Collaborative for Educational Excellence Advisory Council, California Association of Latino Superintendents and Administrators, School Employers Association of California, Association of California School Administrators and the Small School Districts Association.

Fifteen of the 23 appointees were nominated by Brown. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation.

The Planada district serves 825 transitional kindergarten through eighth grade students.

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