Google is to fund computer science teachers in a bid to save the "sorry state" of computing education in the UK.
Eric Schmidt, the company's chairman, has announced money will be provided to pay for teachers and teaching aids, such as Raspberry Pis, as part of a partnership with charity Teach First.
"It's vital to expose kids to this early if they're to have the chance of a computing career", Schmidt said on Wednesday. "Only 2% of Google engineers say they weren't exposed to computer science at high school.
"While not every child is going to become a programmer, those with aptitude shouldn't be denied the chance."
The funds from Google will be used to train 102 "first-rate" science teachers, with the majority specialising in computer science. The three-year partnership with Teach First Aims to address the "severe shortage of economically important subject teachers".
"Put simply, technology breakthroughs can't happen without the scientists and engineers to make them," Schmidt continued. "The challenge that society faces is to equip enough people, with the right skills and mindset, and to get them to work on the most important problems."
Teach First CEO Brett Wigdortz said the issue of ICT and science teachers is particularly prevalent in schools serving low-income communities.
"Through joining forces, we will be able to ensure that more than 20,000 pupils from low socio-economic backgrounds will benefit from having access to inspirational teachers."
The announcement was made at the London's Science Museum, while minister for science and universities David Willetts appeared at Google's Big Tent Conference in Watford.
"It’s clear that at all levels, the IT computer science courses at schools, colleges and universities seem catastrophically just to be very boring and putting people off.”
Teach First said it could not disclose the amount of money pledged by Google.