Cyber security programs thriving at Madison City Schools

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MADISON, Ala. - October is National Cyber Security Month. The cyber security program at Madison City Schools is growing and thriving.

"A lot of kids are taught to program... are playing around with devices and video games but they're never really taught to secure things," said Ben McGee, President and CEO of Cyberprotex.

As the world evolves to be more and more technologically focused, Madison City Schools is evolving too, to equip students with the tools they need.

"In elementary school our students are coding, in middle school our students are participating in two levels of computer science courses -- both of those opportunities open the door for high school experiences," said Heather Donaldson, Madison City Schools Coordinator of Secondary Education.

McGee is part of a group that launched an after-school cyber security club at Madison City Schools.  When students showed interest in the club, the group added two levels of classes to the curriculum.

"The threat is real and it's out there. We're trying to do things here in the Tennessee Valley to put things in place to make sure we prepare the future cyber warriors of tomorrow to be competitive for jobs all around the world," said McGee.

Participants are are able to get certifications in cyber security before they even graduate.

"What we try to do is align the industry certifications with what the job market is asking for right now -- things like Certified Ethical Hacker Certification," explained McGee.