U.S. governors vow to boost computer science education at schools after business push

A student sits at her computer at Kratzer Elementary School in Allentown, Pennsylvania, U.S., April 13, 2021. REUTERS/Hannah Beier

July 15 (Reuters) – (In July 15 story, corrects paragraph 1 to reflect that the 50 governors included 5 from U.S. territories and paragraph 2 to reflect that Governor Asa Hutchinson organized the computer science initiative.)

Fifty U.S. governors have committed to funding a computer science curriculum at more schools after hundreds of executives including Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates sent a letter this week urging action.

The effort, announced on Thursday by the National Governors Association, was organized by Governor Asa Hutchinson as part of an initiative he outlined last year. The executive letter was led by the Seattle-based non-profit Code.org, which aims to provide computer science to students and help them seek careers in technology.

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The executives in their letter called on the governors to update the school curriculum in each state to give students in every school access to computer science education.

“When I was 13, computer science changed the course of my life. I was really lucky to have access to a computer that early on. I hope this initiative will give every student the same opportunity,” Bill Gates said in a tweet earlier this week.

The governors signed the ‘Compact To Expand K-12 Computer Science Education’, committing to expanding access to computer science education through various strategies including funding and increasing participation from traditionally underserved populations.

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Reporting by Mrinalika Roy in Bengaluru and Jeffrey Dastin in New York; Editing by Shailesh Kuber

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