California Schools Are Failing the Tech Industry

1 week ago


Despite the defections of Tesla, Oracle, HP and other companies to Texas and other states, California remains the global technology leader. Silicon Valley still is the place to be for young, hotshot programmers and engineers.

But the state itself is falling behind producing the tech leaders it needs. Its dilapidated public schools system, despite receiving $24,000 per pupil in the state’s new budget, has produced the lowest literacy rate of any state, according to World Population Review.

On Aug. 1, Bloomberg reported on the $280 billion Chips and Science Bill passing in Congress. It criticized the bill for spending too much on the wrong areas. But the problem is real because so much manufacturing has been shipped to China.

“Although America still leads the world in chip design, the global share of semiconductors produced domestically has declined from 37 percent in 1990 to 12 percent today,” Bloomberg wrote. “Analysts estimate that only about 6 percent of new capacity will be built in the U.S. over the next few years, compared to some 40 percent in China.

“Another worry is national security. The US military alone requires about 1.9 billion chips a year for weapons, communications and so on. The sheer variety of essential products and services that now rely on semiconductors—from mobile phones to laptops to medical technologies to automobiles—is enough to give pause about relying so heavily on overseas partners, particularly given the risks of future conflict with China.”

That was published a day before House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s trip to Taipei led to Communist China’s new threats to Taiwan. Col. Shi Yi, the PR flack for the People’s Liberation Army Eastern Theater Command, announced “a series of joint military operations around the island … This action is a solemn deterrent against the recent major escalation of the negative actions of the United States on the Taiwan issue, and a serious warning to the ‘Taiwan independence’ forces seeking ‘independence.’”

We all hope it won’t come to war. But if it does, wouldn’t it help if America produced its own chips and other technology here, the way we do our own energy? Well, at least as we did before President Biden started tanking the energy industry.

Bloomberg reported on how the problem isn’t a lack of investment money, which remains robust. Instead, “The US simply does not have the workforce to sustain this new capacity. About 40 percent of high‐​skilled semiconductor workers in the US were born abroad. Since 1990, the number of foreign-born students in relevant graduate programs has nearly tripled. Yet current immigration policy makes it exceedingly difficult to retain this talent, while the US education system isn’t producing enough domestic graduates with appropriate skills.

“Chipmakers are already straining as a result. A foundry being built in Arizona by the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company is months behind schedule, while the company is struggles to find enough engineers and skilled technicians to staff it. For the US to become self-sufficient in chip production, one report found, it would need to add some 300,000 additional fabrication jobs.”

Last fall, in The Epoch Times I Read Entire Article