So something’s happening: there’s a sense of tectonic plates shifting. But as with most big policy debates, there’s a lot of axe-grinding, lobbying and special pleading going on. Universities want to reverse the decline in applicants for computer science courses. Gaming companies want more programmers. The government wants more high-tech start-ups. Manufacturers want trainees who can design embedded systems. And head teachers want bigger budgets for even more computer labs. And so on.
What’s missing from all this is a big vision. So here’s my shot at one:
Starting in primary school, children from all backgrounds and every part of the US and UK should have the opportunity to: learn some of the key ideas of computer science; understand computational thinking; learn to program; and have the opportunity to progress to the next level of excellence in these activities.