Tech leaders urge California to increase computer education in schools

Leaders of key technology companies including Microsoft, Google, Twitter and Salesforce.com have written to the Governor of California Jerry Brown offering to partner with the state to increase computer education in kindergarten to 12th grade schools. 90 percent of these K-12 schools do not currently teach computer science. On the other hand, there is a mismatch between the number of computer science jobs and graduates in the state, according to the letter which is signed by business executives as well as organizations active in the area of education.

Executives from Twitter Inc., Google Inc., Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) and Netflix Inc. (NFLX) signed a letter urging California Governor Jerry Brown to support efforts to provide students with greater access to computer science classes. Lawmakers in Sacramento are considering six bills that promote technology courses, including one that would require them in public elementary schools. “Learning to code at a young age opened my eyes to the incredibly exciting world of technology and entrepreneurship,” said Marc Benioff, chief executive officer of Salesforce.com Inc. (CRM), one of the executives who signed the letter. Less than 5 percent of California public schools now teach computer science, according to Code.Org, a non-profit group founded by Silicon Valley angel investors Hadi and Ali Partovi that prepared the letter.

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