Full Cyber Security program approved at Huntsville City Schools Career Academies

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT)-- Coming soon -- new Cyber Security classes for students in Huntsville City SChools Career Academies.

"Ultimately, we will have comprehensive four year cyber security curriculum," said Susan Moon, Career Academy Coordinator.

Juniors and Seniors are already studying cyber security. The change would be new additions, "Infosec" 1 and 2, soon to be accompanied by 3 and 4.

Infosec 1 would be available for 9th graders. That class is already going this semester, through a pilot program.

"They're going to learn about areas of vulnerability. And it is the basis of our cybersecurity program," said Moon.

Fall of 2015 will introduce "Infosec" 2, the second part of that curriculum, for 10th graders. The following components for juniors and seniors will be phased-in afterward.

Moon told the Huntsville City Board of Education the good news Tuesday night; the new classes have been approved by the state, and officially assigned course numbers.

Huntsville City Schools is the first in the state to request and also be approved for full 4-year cyber curriculum like this, although Moon says other districts in the state are working through the approval process now.

"There is a critical shortage of cyber security experts, at every level," said Moon. "This program is something that it's good for the schools, it's good for the students, but it actually may make a difference in the quality of our life nationwide."

Students tell us it's already giving them a leg up on the competition getting into college.

Cailin Simpson, a New Century Technology High School senior, said, "I was actually able to intern at Dynetics over the summer. I was 16 years old... able to get industry experience for something that I learned at New Century Technology High School."

Moon says through this curriculum, students can also get certificates in the field that qualify them for jobs right out of high school.

These Cyber Security classes at Huntsville City Schools are supported by partnerships with the local community, including agencies at Redstone Arsenal and Cyber Huntsville.