To what extent should the standards of the Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA), a US-based professional organization for computer science educators, inform what is on-topic in this community?
I ask this in response to several questions of late that have got me pondering how we understand the computer science side of this community.
For example, one of the framework concepts of the standards is "Impact of Computing." A K-2 (ages 5-7) standard representative of that is "Compare and contrast examples of how computing technology has changed and improved the way people live, work, and interact" (1A-I-7-15). A "Networks and the Internet" standard for the same age range is as follows: "Use computers or other computing devices to connect with people using a network (e.g., the Internet) to communicate, access, and share information as a class" (1A-N-2-16). Using a shared Google Doc would be appropriate for this latter standard, yet that might seem to be off-topic here. Those standards certainly aren't at the level of machine learning, but are they the early stages of computer science?
I don't want to presume that we should be beholden to these standards, yet this is all there is for K-12 (ages 5-18) education in the US as far as standards go. Does that mean any/all standards from 5-year-olds using Google and 18-year-olds studying dynamic programming make for on-topic questions? If not, where and how do we draw the line?
Moreover, is anything under the umbrella of "computational thinking" acceptable in this community as it is constitutive of computer science?
The standards define computer science in this way:
The study of computers and algorithmic processes, including their principles, design, implementation, and impact on society.
That has a much different tone from the Wikipedia definition that's come up. Which do we use? Both? Neither? Our own?
Before we go public and invite teachers, it will help to have a clear line as to what is appropriate here and what is not. If something is based on a CS standard, is it automatically acceptable?