Google blows Raspberry Pi at UK schools

Google has written a cheque to provide UK schools more than 15,000 free microcomputers.

Google’s chairman Eric Schmidt and Raspberry Pi co-founder Eben Upton say that the move should help create a new generation of computer scientists and inspire children to take up coding.

Schmidt has said before that UK schools were undermining the IT industry by not producing students who could create technology.

He is worried that current information and communications technology teaching is inadequate preparation for future jobs in technology.

The partnership was announced at Chesterton Community College in Cambridge, where children were given a coding lesson by Schmidt and Upton.

Upton hoped that his company’s partnership with Google will be a significant moment in the development of computing education in the UK.

He thought it would be possible to turn around the year-on-year decline in the numbers and skill sets of students applying to read computer science at university.

Over the last 10 years, the numbers of people studying computer science in the UK dropped by 23 percent at undergraduate level.

Announcing Google’s Raspberry Pi giveaway, Schmidt said that Britain’s innovators and entrepreneurs have changed the world and it is time to encourage the next generation of computer scientists, and we hoped the donation would go some way towards that.

According to the BBC, Google is also sponsoring ICT teacher training via a scheme in conjunction with the Teach First charity.