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Free Pi for 15,000 UK students, courtesy of Google

Google Giving has donated a grant that will provide 15,000 Raspberry Pi Model B units to UK students.

Google Giving, the corporation's philanthropic branch, has made a generous but undisclosed grant that will provide 15,000 units of the Raspberry Pi Model B – as well as support – to pupils in the UK.

Chairman Eric Schmidt visited a school in Cambridge early this morning and even taught schoolchildren some coding. Schmidt stated in regard to the grant, "Britain's innovators and entrepreneurs have changed the world — the telephone, television, and computers were all invented here. We've been working to encourage the next generation of computer scientists and we hope this donation of Raspberry Pi's to British school pupils will help drive a new wave of innovation."

Google will work alongside six education partners, namely CoderDojo, Code Club, Computing at Schools, Generating Genius, Teach First, and OCR. These partners will help determine the kids who will most benefit from having their own Pi. Additionally, OCR will create learning packs to go hand-in-hand with the microcontroller units.

Raspberry Pi founder Eben Upton stated in a blog post, "We're absolutely made up over the news; this is a brilliant way for us to find kids all over the country whose aptitude for computing can now be explored properly. We believe that access to tools is a fundamental necessity in finding out who you are and what you’re good at. We want those tools to be within everybody’s grasp, right from the start."

Upton concluded the blog with an enthusiastic sentiment toward a resurgence in CS at schools. In the bog post, he stated, "The really good sign is that [the] industry has a visible commitment now to trying to solve the problem of CS education in the UK. Grants like this show us that companies like Google aren’t prepared to wait for government or someone else to fix the problems we’re all discussing, but want to help tackle them themselves."

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