All posts by Philip Colligan

What would an IPO mean for the Raspberry Pi Foundation?

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/what-would-an-ipo-mean-for-the-raspberry-pi-foundation/

On 22 May 2024, we announced that we are intending to list the Foundation’s commercial subsidiary, Raspberry Pi Ltd, on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange. This is called an Initial Public Offering (IPO). 

The IPO process is — quite rightly — highly regulated, and information about the company and the potential listing can be found on the Investor Portal on Raspberry Pi Ltd’s website. If that’s what you’re looking for, head there. 

In this blog post, I want to explain what an IPO of Raspberry Pi Ltd would mean for the Raspberry Pi Foundation. 

A tale of two Raspberry Pis

The Raspberry Pi Foundation was founded in 2008 as a UK-based educational charity. Our co-founders wanted to inspire more young people to explore the joys of coding and creating with technology, with the goal of increasing both the number and diversity of kids choosing to study computer science and engineering.

Their idea was to create a low-cost, programmable computer that could rekindle some of the excitement sparked in young minds at the start of the personal computing revolution by platforms like the BBC Micro and ZX Spectrum (incidentally also invented in Cambridge, UK). 

Raspberry Pi Ltd was incorporated in 2012 as the commercial subsidiary of the Foundation and is responsible for all aspects of design, production, and distribution of Raspberry Pi computers and associated technologies. It has always been a commercial company, albeit one that was initially wholly owned by a charity. 

Learners in a computing classroom.

It’s fairly common for UK charities to have subsidiaries that handle their commercial activities. Guidance from the regulator, the Charity Commission, explains that it helps protect the charity’s assets and ensures that the charity benefits from tax relief on profits that are generated from commercial activities and used to advance the charity’s objectives.

So Raspberry Pi has pretty much always been a tale of two organisations: the Foundation, which is a charity, and Raspberry Pi Ltd, which is a commercial company. While we are legally and practically separate organisations, we are united by a mission to democratise computing, and by a set of values that reflect the community of makers, engineers, and educators that have always been such a central part of the Raspberry Pi story.

Computing for everybody

In the years since the launch of the first Raspberry Pi computer in 2012, Raspberry Pi Ltd has continued to innovate and expand its range of products, evolving into a leading provider of high-performance, single-board computers and associated technologies for industrial and embedded uses, as well as for enthusiasts and educators, in markets worldwide. For more information on the company and all it has achieved, you should take a look at the Investor Portal.

In a computing classroom, two young children look at a computer screen.

For me, one of the most important things about a Raspberry Pi computer is that kids are learning to code on the same platform that is used by the world’s leading engineers and scientists. It’s not a toy, although it is a lot of fun. 

Crucially, the commitment to low-cost computing that was at the heart of Raspberry Pi’s founding ethos remains unchanged and has been enshrined in a legally binding agreement between the Foundation and the company. This means that Raspberry Pi will always produce low-cost, general-purpose computers that can be used for teaching and learning.

Over that same period, the Foundation has innovated and expanded its educational products and learning experiences to the point where we are now widely recognised as one of the world’s leading contributors to the democratisation of computing education. 

Three learners and an educator do a physical computing activity.

We create curricula and classroom resources that are used in schools all over the globe, covering everything from basic digital skills to computer science and AI literacy. We provide high-quality professional development for teachers and we build software tools that reduce barriers, save time, and improve learning outcomes. We also support the world’s largest network of free coding clubs and inspire young people to get creative with tech through showcases and challenges. All of this is completely free for teachers and students wherever they are in the world. 

We are also advancing the field of computing education through undertaking original research and translating evidence of what works into practice.

Young people at a laptop in a club session.

Importantly, the Foundation is device- and platform-agnostic. That means that, while Raspberry Pi computers make a huge contribution to our educational mission, you don’t need to use a Raspberry Pi computer to engage with our learning experiences and resources. 

The next stage of growth and impact

The proposed IPO is all about securing the next stage of growth and impact for both the Foundation and the commercial company. 

To date, Raspberry Pi Ltd has donated nearly $50m from its profits to the Foundation, which we have used to advance our educational mission combined with over $60m in funding from philanthropy, sponsorship, and contracts for educational services.

Three female students at the Coding Academy in Telangana.

As the company has continued to grow, it has needed working capital and funding to invest in innovation and product development. Over the past few years that has mainly come from retained profits. Listing Raspberry Pi Ltd on a public market will enable the company to raise additional capital through issuing new shares, which will lead to broader reach, greater impact, and ultimately more value being created for the benefit of all shareholders, including the Foundation.

From the Foundation’s perspective, an IPO provides us with the ability to sell some of our shares to raise money to finance a sustainable expansion of our educational activities. Put simply, instead of receiving a share of the company’s profits each year, we will convert some of our shareholding into an endowment that we will use to fund our educational programmes.

What happens after the IPO? 

Assuming we proceed with the IPO, what is now Raspberry Pi Ltd will become a public company that trades its shares on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange. 

A classroom of young learners and a teacher at laptops

The Foundation will remain a significant shareholder and we will continue to share the Raspberry Pi brand. We will be involved in decision making on the same basis as all other shareholders. Our goal will be to support the company to be as successful as possible in its mission to make computing accessible and affordable for everybody.

The Foundation will use any funds that we raise through the sale of shares at the IPO — or subsequently — to advance our ambitious global strategy to enable every young person to realise their full potential through the power of computing and digital technologies.

A young person uses a computer.

Partnership will continue to be at the heart of our strategy and we will work closely with businesses, foundations, and governments to ensure that our work reaches as many teachers and young people as possible. Our ambition is that around 50% of our activities will be funded from the endowment and 50% through partnerships and donations, enabling us to reach many more teachers and students by combining our resources and expertise with those of the many partners who share our mission.

Creating a lasting legacy 

Whatever happens with the IPO, Raspberry Pi has already had a huge impact on the world. It’s been an enormous privilege to be part of the journey so far, and I am hugely excited about the potential of this next phase.

I want to pay tribute to all of our co-founders for setting us off on this great adventure, and particularly to Jack Lang, who very sadly passed away earlier this month. Jack made an exceptional and unique contribution to the Raspberry Pi story, and he deserves to go down in history as one of the most significant figures in computing education in the UK. I know he would have shared my excitement about this next chapter in the Raspberry Pi story. 

With the pace of technological advances in fields like AI, our mission has never been more vital. We have the potential to positively impact the lives of tens of millions of young people who might otherwise miss out on the opportunity to change the world for the better through technology.

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Code Club at Number Ten Downing Street

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/code-club-number-ten-downing-street/

With the rapid advances in digital technologies like artificial intelligence, it’s more important than ever that every young person has the opportunity to learn how computers are being used to change the world and to develop the skills and confidence to get creative with technology. 

Learners at a Code Club taking place at Number Ten Downing Street.
Crown copyright. Licensed under the Open Government Licence.

There’s no better way to develop those abilities (super powers even) than getting hands-on experience of programming, whether that’s coding an animation, designing a game, creating a website, building a robot buggy, or training an AI classification model. That’s what tens of thousands of young people do every day in Code Clubs all over the world. 

Lessons at 10 

We were absolutely thrilled to organise a Code Club at Number Ten Downing Street last week, hosted by the UK Prime Minister’s wife Akshata Murty as part of Lessons at 10.

A Code Club session taking place at Number Ten Downing Street.
Crown copyright. Licensed under the Open Government Licence.

Lessons at 10 is an initiative to bring school children from all over the UK into Number Ten Downing Street, the official residence of the Prime Minister. Every week different schools visit to attend lessons led by education partners covering all kinds of subjects. 

A Code Club session taking place at Number Ten Downing Street.
Crown copyright. Licensed under the Open Government Licence.

We ran a Code Club for 20 Year 7 students (ages 11 to 12) from schools in Coventry and Middlesex. The young people had a great time with the Silly eyes and Ghostbusters projects from our collections of Scratch projects. Both stone-cold classics in my opinion, and a great place to start if you’re new to programming.

A Code Club session taking place at Number Ten Downing Street.
Crown copyright. Licensed under the Open Government Licence.

You may have spotted in the photos that the young people were programming on Raspberry Pi computers (the incredible Raspberry Pi 400 made in Wales). We also managed to get our hands on some cool new monitors. 

Mrs Murty’s father was one of the founders of Infosys, which ranks among the world’s most successful technology companies, founded in India and now operating all over the world. So it is perhaps no surprise that she spoke eloquently to the students about the importance of every young person learning about technology and seeing themselves as digital creators not consumers.

Akshata Murty talks to Philip Colligan, CEO of the Raspberry Pi Foundation.
Crown copyright. Licensed under the Open Government Licence.

We were lucky enough to be in one of the rather fancy rooms in Number Ten, featuring a portrait by John Constable of his niece Ada Lovelace, the world’s first computer programmer. Mrs Murty reminded us that one of the lessons we learn from Ada Lovelace is that computer programming combines both the logical and artistic aspects of human intelligence. So true. 

A global movement 

Since Code Club’s launch in April 2012, it has grown to be the world’s largest movement of free computing clubs and has supported over 2 million young people to get creative with technology.

Learners from a Code Club in front of Number Ten Downing Street.
Crown copyright. Licensed under the Open Government Licence.

Code Clubs provide a free, fun, and safe environment for young people from all backgrounds to develop their digital skills. Run by teachers and volunteers, most Code Clubs take place in schools, and there are also lots in libraries and other community venues. 

The Raspberry Pi Foundation provides a broad range of projects that young people use to build their confidence and skills with lots of different hardware and software. The ultimate goal is that they are empowered to combine their logical and artistic skills to create something original. Just like Ada Lovelace did all those years ago.

Learners at a Code Club taking place at Number Ten Downing Street.
Crown copyright. Licensed under the Open Government Licence.

All of our projects are designed to be self-directed, so young people can learn independently or in groups. That means that you don’t need to be a tech expert to set up or run a Code Club. We provide you with all the support that you need to get started.

If you want to find out more about how to set up a Code Club, visit the website here.

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AI literacy for teachers and students all over the world

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/experience-ai-canada-kenya-romania/

I am delighted to announce that the Raspberry Pi Foundation and Google DeepMind are building a global network of educational organisations to bring AI literacy to teachers and students all over the world, starting with Canada, Kenya, and Romania.

Learners in a classroom in Kenya.
Learners around the world will gain AI literacy skills through Experience AI.

Experience AI 

We launched Experience AI in September 2022 to help teachers and students learn about AI technologies and how they are changing the world. 

Developed by the Raspberry Pi Foundation and Google DeepMind, Experience AI provides everything that teachers need to confidently deliver engaging lessons that will inspire and educate young people about AI and the role that it could play in their lives.

A group of young people investigate computer hardware together.
Experience AI is designed to inspire learners about AI through real-world contexts.

We provide lesson plans, classroom resources, worksheets, hands-on activities, and videos that introduce a wide range of AI applications and the underlying technologies that make them work. The materials are designed to be relatable to young people and can be taught by any teacher, whether or not they have a technical background. Alongside the classroom resources, we provide teacher professional development, including an online course that provides an introduction to machine learning and AI. 

Part of Experience AI are video interviews with AI developers at Google DeepMind.

The materials are grounded in real-world contexts and emphasise the potential for young people to positively change the world through a mastery of AI technologies. 

Since launching the first resources, we have seen significant demand from teachers and students all over the world, with over 200,000 students already learning with Experience AI. 

Experience AI network

Building on that initial success and in response to huge demand, we are now building a global network of educational organisations to expand the reach and impact of Experience AI by translating and localising the materials, promoting them to schools, and supporting teacher professional development.

Obum Ekeke OBE, Head of Education Partnerships at Google DeepMind, says:

“We have been blown away by the interest we have seen in Experience AI since its launch and are thrilled to be working with the Raspberry Pi Foundation and local partners to expand the reach of the programme. AI literacy is a critical skill in today’s world, but not every young person currently has access to relevant education and resources. By making AI education more inclusive, we can help young people make more informed decisions about using AI applications in their daily lives, and encourage safe and responsible use of the technology.”

Learner in a computing classroom.
Experience AI helps learners understand how they might use AI to positively change the world.

Today we are announcing the first three organisations that we are working with, each of which is already doing fantastic work to democratise digital skills in their part of the world. All three are already working in partnership with the Raspberry Pi Foundation and we are excited to be deepening and expanding our collaboration to include AI literacy.

Digital Moment, Canada

Digital Moment is a Montreal-based nonprofit focused on empowering young changemakers through digital skills. Founded in 2013, Digital Moment has a track record of supporting teachers and students across Canada to learn about computing, coding, and AI literacy, including through supporting one of the world’s largest networks of Code Clubs

Digital Moment logo.

“We’re excited to be working with the Raspberry Pi Foundation and Google DeepMind to bring Experience AI to teachers across Canada. Since 2018, Digital Moment has been introducing rich training experiences and educational resources to make sure that Canadian teachers have the support to navigate the impacts of AI in education for their students. Through this partnership, we will be able to reach more teachers and with more resources, to keep up with the incredible pace and disruption of AI.”

Indra Kubicek, President, Digital Moment

Tech Kidz Africa, Kenya

Tech Kidz Africa is a Mobasa-based social enterprise that nurtures creativity in young people across Kenya through digital skills including coding, robotics, app and web development, and creative design thinking.

Tech Kidz Africa logo.

“With the retooling of teachers as a key objective of Tech Kidz Africa, working with Google DeepMind and the Raspberry Pi Foundation will enable us to build the capacity of educators to empower the 21st century learner, enhancing the teaching and learning experience to encourage innovation and  prepare the next generation for the future of work.”

Grace Irungu, CEO, Tech Kidz Africa

Asociația Techsoup, Romania

Asociația Techsoup works with teachers and students across Romania and Moldova, training Computer Science, ICT, and primary school teachers to build their competencies around coding and technology. A longstanding partner of the Raspberry Pi Foundation, they foster a vibrant community of CoderDojos and support young people to participate in Coolest Projects and the European Astro Pi Challenge

Asociata Techsoup logo.

“We are enthusiastic about participating in this global partnership to bring high-quality AI education to all students, regardless of their background. Given the current exponential growth of AI tools and instruments in our daily lives, it is crucial to ensure that students and teachers everywhere comprehend and effectively utilise these tools to enhance their human, civic, and professional potential. Experience AI is the best available method for AI education for middle school students. We couldn’t be more thrilled to work with the Raspberry Pi Foundation and Google DeepMind to make it accessible in Romanian for teachers in Romania and the Republic of Moldova, and to assist teachers in fully integrating it into their classes.”

Elena Coman, Director of Development, Asociația Techsoup

Get involved

These are the first of what will become a global network of organisations supporting tens of thousands of teachers to equip millions of students with a foundational understanding of AI technologies through Experience AI. If you want to get involved in inspiring the next generation of AI leaders, we would love to hear from you.

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What does AI mean for computing education?

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/what-does-ai-mean-for-computing-education/

It’s been less than a year since ChatGPT catapulted generative artificial intelligence (AI) into mainstream public consciousness, reigniting the debate about the role that these powerful new technologies will play in all of our futures.

A person in front of a cloudy sky, seen through a refractive glass grid. Parts of the image are overlaid with a diagram of a neural network.
Image: Alan Warburton / © BBC / Better Images of AI / Quantified Human / CC-BY 4.0

‘Will AI save or destroy humanity?’ might seem like an extreme title for a podcast, particularly if you’ve played with these products and enjoyed some of their obvious limitations. The reality is that we are still at the foothills of what AI technology can achieve (think World Wide Web in the 1990s), and lots of credible people are predicting an astonishing pace of progress over the next few years, promising the radical transformation of almost every aspect of our lives. Comparisons with the Industrial Revolution abound.

At the same time, there are those saying it’s all moving too fast; that regulation isn’t keeping pace with innovation. One of the UK’s leading AI entrepreneurs, Mustafa Suleyman, said recently: “If you don’t start from a position of fear, you probably aren’t paying attention.”

In a computing classroom, a girl looks at a computer screen.
What is AI literacy for young people?

What does all this mean for education, and particularly for computing education? Is there any point trying to teach children about AI when it is all changing so fast? Does anyone need to learn to code anymore? Will teachers be replaced by chatbots? Is assessment as we know it broken?

If we’re going to seriously engage with these questions, we need to understand that we’re talking about three different things:

  1. AI literacy: What it is and how we teach it
  2. Rethinking computer science (and possibly some other subjects)
  3. Enhancing teaching and learning through AI-powered technologies

AI literacy: What it is and how we teach it

For young people to thrive in a world that is being transformed by AI systems, they need to understand these technologies and the role they could play in their lives.

In a computing classroom, a smiling girl raises her hand.
Our SEAME model articulates the concepts, knowledge, and skills that are essential ingredients of any AI literacy curriculum.

The first problem is defining what AI literacy actually means. What are the concepts, knowledge, and skills that it would be useful for a young person to learn?

The reality is that — with a few notable exceptions — the vast majority of AI literacy resources available today are probably doing more harm than good.

In the past couple of years there has been a huge explosion in resources that claim to help young people develop AI literacy. Our research team mapped and categorised over 500 resources, and undertaken a systematic literature review to understand what research has been done on K–12 AI classroom interventions (spoiler: not much). 

The reality is that — with a few notable exceptions — the vast majority of AI literacy resources available today are probably doing more harm than good. For example, in an attempt to be accessible and fun, many materials anthropomorphise AI systems, using human terms to describe them and their functions and thereby perpetuating misconceptions about what AI systems are and how they work.

A real banana and an image of a banana shown on the screen of a laptop are both labelled "Banana".
Image: Max Gruber / Better Images of AI / Ceci n’est pas une banane / CC-BY 4.0

What emerged from this work at the Raspberry Pi Foundation is the SEAME model, which articulates the concepts, knowledge, and skills that are essential ingredients of any AI literacy curriculum. It separates out the social and ethical, application, model, and engine levels of AI systems — all of which are important — and gets specific about age-appropriate learning outcomes for each. 

This research has formed the basis of Experience AI (experience-ai.org), a suite of resources, lessons plans, videos, and interactive learning experiences created by the Raspberry Pi Foundation in partnership with Google DeepMind, which is already being used in thousands of classrooms.

If we’re serious about AI literacy for young people, we have to get serious about AI literacy for teachers.

Defining AI literacy and developing resources is part of the challenge, but that doesn’t solve the problem of how we get them into the hands and minds of every young person. This will require policy change. We need governments and education system leaders to grasp that a foundational understanding of AI technologies is essential for creating economic opportunity, ensuring that young people have the mindsets to engage positively with technological change, and avoiding a widening of the digital divide. We’ve messed this up before with digital skills. Let’s not do it again.

Two smiling adults learn about computing at desktop computers.
Teacher professional development is key to AI literacy for young people.

More than anything, we need to invest in teachers and their professional development. While there are some fantastic computing teachers with computer science qualifications, the reality is that most of the computing lessons taught anywhere on the planet are taught by a non-specialist teacher. That is even more so the case for anything related to AI. If we’re serious about AI literacy for young people, we have to get serious about AI literacy for teachers. 

Rethinking computer science 

Alongside introducing AI literacy, we also need to take a hard look at computer science. At the very least, we need to make sure that computer science curricula include machine learning models, explaining how they constitute a new paradigm for computing, and give more emphasis to the role that data will play in the future of computing. Adding anything new to an already packed computer science curriculum means tough choices about what to deprioritise to make space.

Elephants in the Serengeti.
One of our Experience AI Lessons revolves around the us of AI technology to study the Serengeti ecosystem.

And, while we’re reviewing curricula, what about biology, geography, or any of the other subjects that are just as likely to be revolutionised by big data and AI? As part of Experience AI, we are launching some of the first lessons focusing on ecosystems and AI, which we think should be at the heart of any modern biology curriculum. 

Some are saying young people don’t need to learn how to code. It’s an easy political soundbite, but it just doesn’t stand up to serious scrutiny.

There is already a lively debate about the extent to which the new generation of AI technologies will make programming as we know it obsolete. In January, the prestigious ACM journal ran an opinion piece from Matt Welsh, founder of an AI-powered programming start-up, in which he said: “I believe the conventional idea of ‘writing a program’ is headed for extinction, and indeed, for all but very specialised applications, most software, as we know it, will be replaced by AI systems that are trained rather than programmed.”

Computer science students at a desktop computer in a classroom.
Writing computer programs is an essential part of learning how to analyse problems in computational terms.

With GitHub (now part of Microsoft) claiming that their pair programming technology, Copilot, is now writing 46 percent of developers’ code, it’s perhaps not surprising that some are saying young people don’t need to learn how to code. It’s an easy political soundbite, but it just doesn’t stand up to serious scrutiny. 

Even if AI systems can improve to the point where they generate consistently reliable code, it seems to me that it is just as likely that this will increase the demand for more complex software, leading to greater demand for more programmers. There is historical precedent for this: the invention of abstract programming languages such as Python dramatically simplified the act of humans providing instructions to computers, leading to more complex software and a much greater demand for developers. 

A child codes a Spiderman project at a laptop during a Code Club session.
Learning to program will help young people understand how the world around them is being transformed by AI systems.

However these AI-powered tools develop, it will still be essential for young people to learn the fundamentals of programming and to get hands-on experience of writing code as part of any credible computer science course. Practical experience of writing computer programs is an essential part of learning how to analyse problems in computational terms; it brings the subject to life; it will help young people understand how the world around them is being transformed by AI systems; and it will ensure that they are able to shape that future, rather than it being something that is done to them.

Enhancing teaching and learning through AI-powered technologies

Technology has already transformed learning. YouTube is probably the most important educational innovation of the past 20 years, democratising both the creation and consumption of learning resources. Khan Academy, meanwhile, integrated video instruction into a learning experience that gamified formative assessment. Our own edtech platform, Ada Computer Science, combines comprehensive instructional materials, a huge bank of questions designed to help learning, and automated marking and feedback to make computer science easier to teach and learn. Brilliant though these are, none of them have even begun to harness the potential of AI systems like large language models (LLMs).

The challenge for all of us working in education is how we ensure that ethics and privacy are at the centre of the development of [AI-powered edtech].

One area where I think we’ll see huge progress is feedback. It’s well-established that good-quality feedback makes a huge difference to learning, but a teacher’s ability to provide feedback is limited by their time. No one is seriously claiming that chatbots will replace teachers, but — if we can get the quality right — LLM applications could provide every child with unlimited, on-demand feedback. AI-powered feedback — not giving students the answers, but coaching, suggesting, and encouraging in the way that great teachers already do — could be transformational.

Two adults learn about computing at desktop computers.
The challenge for all of us working in education is how we ensure that ethics and privacy are at the centre of the development of AI-powered edtech.

We are already seeing edtech companies racing to bring new products and features to market that leverage LLMs, and my prediction is that the pace of that innovation is going to increase exponentially over the coming years. The challenge for all of us working in education is how we ensure that ethics and privacy are at the centre of the development of these technologies. That’s important for all applications of AI, but especially so in education, where these systems will be unleashed directly on young people. How much data from students will an AI system need to access? Can that data — aggregated from millions of students — be used to train new models? How can we communicate transparently the limitations of the information provided back to students?

Ultimately, we need to think about how parents, teachers, and education systems (the purchasers of edtech products) will be able to make informed choices about what to put in front of students. Standards will have an important role to play here, and I think we should be exploring ideas such as an AI kitemark for edtech products that communicate whether they meet a set of standards around bias, transparency, and privacy. 

Realising potential in a brave new world

We may very well be entering an era in which AI systems dramatically enhance the creativity and productivity of humanity as a species. Whether the reality lives up to the hype or not, AI systems are undoubtedly going to be a big part of all of our futures, and we urgently need to figure out what that means for education, and what skills, knowledge, and mindsets young people need to develop in order to realise their full potential in that brave new world. 

That’s the work we’re engaged in at the Raspberry Pi Foundation, working in partnership with individuals and organisations from across industry, government, education, and civil society.

If you have ideas and want to get involved in shaping the future of computing education, we’d love to hear from you.


This article will also appear in issue 22 of Hello World magazine, which focuses on teaching and AI. We are publishing this new issue on Monday 23 October. Sign up for a free digital subscription to get the PDF straight to your inbox on the day.

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Celebrate Pi Day by supporting the Raspberry Pi Foundation

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/pi-day-2023-support-computing-education/

Today is officially Pi Day. 

While 14 March is an opportunity for our American friends to celebrate the mathematical constant Pi, we are also very happy to make this day a chance to say a massive thank you to everyone who supports the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s work through their generous donations.

More than computers

You may know that the Raspberry Pi story started in Cambridge, UK, in 2008 when a group of engineers-cum-entrepreuers set out to improve computing education by inventing a programmable computer for the price of a textbook.

A group of young people investigate computer hardware together.

Fast forward 15 years and there are 50 million Raspberry Pi computers in the world, being used to revolutionise education and industry alike. Removing price as a barrier for anyone to own a powerful, general-purpose computer will always be an important part of our mission to democratise access to computing.

What we also know today is that access to low-cost, high-quality hardware is essential, but it’s not enough. 

If we want all young people to be able to take advantage of the potential offered by technological innovation, then we also need to support teachers to introduce computing in schools, find ways to inspire young people to learn outside of their formal education, and make sure that everything we do is informed by rigorous research.

Kenyan educators work on a physical computing project.

That’s the focus of our educational mission at the Raspberry Pi Foundation, and we couldn’t do this work without your support. 

What we achieve for young people thanks to your support 

We are fortunate that a large and growing community of people, corporations, trusts, and foundations makes very generous donations to support our educational mission. It’s thanks to you that we are able to achieve what we do for young people and educators: 

  • In 2022 alone, over 3.54m people engaged with our free online learning resources for young people, including brand-new pathways of projects for HTML/CSS, Python, and Raspberry Pi Pico
  • Supported by us, more than 4500 Code Club and CoderDojos are running in 103 countries, and an additional 2891 clubs that were disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic tell us that they are actively planning to start running sessions for young people again soon. 
  • We engaged over 30,000 young people in challenges such as Astro Pi and Coolest Projects, enabling them to showcase their skills, think about how to solve problems using technology, and connect with like-minded peers.
A young coder shows off her tech project Five young coders show off their robotic garden tech project for Coolest Projects to two other young tech creators.
  • We have supported tens of thousands of computing teachers through our curriculum, resources, and online training. For example, The Computing Curriculum, which we developed as part of the National Centre for Computing Education in England, is now being used by educators all over the world, with 1.7m global downloads in 2022. 
  • We completed and published the findings of the world’s largest-ever research programme testing how to improve the gender balance in computing. We are now working on integrating the insights from the programme into our own work and making them accessible and actionable for practitioners.

Trust me when I say this is just a small selection of highlights, all of which are made possible by our amazing supporters. Thank you, and I hope that we made you proud. 

Get involved today

If you haven’t yet made a donation to our Pi Day campaign, it’s not too late to get involved. Your donation will help inspire the next generation of digital technology creators.

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What to expect from the Raspberry Pi Foundation in 2023

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/raspberry-pi-foundation-plans-2023/

Welcome to 2023.  I hope that you had a fantastic 2022 and that you’re looking forward to an even better year ahead. To help get the year off to a great start, I thought it might be fun to share a few of the things that we’ve got planned for 2023.

A teacher and learner at a laptop doing coding.

Whether you’re a teacher, a mentor, or a young person, if it’s computer science, coding, or digital skills that you’re looking for, we’ve got you covered. 

Your code in space 

Through our collaboration with the European Space Agency, theAstro Pi, young people can write computer programs that are guaranteed to run on the Raspberry Pi computers on the International Space Station (terms and conditions apply).

Two Astro Pi units on board the International Space Station.
The Raspberry Pi computers on board the ISS (Image: ESA/NASA)

Astro Pi Mission Zero is open to participants until 17 March 2023 and is a perfect introduction to programming in Python for beginners. It takes about an hour to complete and we provide step-by-step guides for teachers, mentors, and young people. 

Make a cool project and share it with the world 

Kids all over the world are already working on their entries to Coolest Projects Global 2023, our international online showcase that will see thousands of young people share their brilliant tech creations with the world. Registration opens on 6 February and it’s super simple to get involved. If you’re looking for inspiration, why not explore the judges’ favourite projects from 2022?

Five young coders show off their robotic garden tech project for Coolest Projects.

While we all love the Coolest Projects online showcase, I’m also looking forward to attending more in-person Coolest Projects events in 2023. The word on the street is that members of the Raspberry Pi team have been spotted scouting venues in Ireland… Watch this space. 

Experience AI 

I am sure I wasn’t alone in disappearing down a ChatGPT rabbit hole at the end of last year after OpenAI made their latest AI chatbot available for free. The internet exploded with both incredible examples of what the chatbot can do and furious debates about the limitations and ethics of AI systems.

A group of young people investigate computer hardware together.

With the rapid advances being made in AI technology, it’s increasingly important that young people are able to understand how AI is affecting their lives now and the role that it can play in their future. This year we’ll be building on our research into the future of AI and data science education and launching Experience AI in partnership with leading AI company DeepMind. The first wave of resources and learning experiences will be available in March. 

The big Code Club and CoderDojo meetup

With pandemic restrictions now almost completely unwound, we’ve seen a huge resurgence in Code Clubs and CoderDojos meeting all over the world. To build on this momentum, we are delighted to be welcoming Code Club and CoderDojo mentors and educators to a big Clubs Conference in Churchill College in Cambridge on 24 and 25 March.

Workshop attendees at a table.

This will be the first time we’re holding a community get-together since 2019 and a great opportunity to share learning and make new connections. 

Building partnerships in India, Kenya, and South Africa 

As part of our global mission to ensure that every young person is able to learn how to create with digital technologies, we have been focused on building partnerships in India, Kenya, and South Africa, and that work will be expanding in 2023.

Two Kenyan educators work on a physical computing project.

In India we will significantly scale up our work with established partners Mo School and Pratham Education Foundation, training 2000 more teachers in government schools in Odisha, and running 2200 Code Clubs across four states. We will also be launching new partnerships with community-based organisations in Kenya and South Africa, helping them set up networks of Code Clubs and co-designing learning experiences that help them bring computing education to their communities of young people. 

Exploring computing education for 5- to 11-year-olds 

Over the past few years, our research seminar series has covered computing education topics from diversity and inclusion, to AI and data science. This year, we’re focusing on current questions and research in primary computing education for 5- to 11-year-olds.

A teacher and a learner at a laptop doing coding.

As ever, we’re providing a platform for some of the world’s leading researchers to share their insights, and convening a community of educators, researchers, and policy makers to engage in the discussion. The first seminar takes place today (Tuesday 10 January) and it’s not too late to sign up.

And much, much more… 

That’s just a few of the super cool things that we’ve got planned for 2023. I haven’t even mentioned the new online projects we’re developing with our friends at Unity, the fun we’ve got planned with our very own online text editor, or what’s next for our curriculum and professional development offer for computing teachers.

You can sign up to our monthly newsletter to always stay up to date with what we’re working on.

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Experience AI with the Raspberry Pi Foundation and DeepMind

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/experience-ai-deepmind-ai-education/

I am delighted to announce a new collaboration between the Raspberry Pi Foundation and a leading AI company, DeepMind, to inspire the next generation of AI leaders.

Young people work together to investigate computer hardware.

The Raspberry Pi Foundation’s mission is to enable young people to realise their full potential through the power of computing and digital technologies. Our vision is that every young person — whatever their background — should have the opportunity to learn how to create and solve problems with computers.

With the rapid advances in artificial intelligence — from machine learning and robotics, to computer vision and natural language processing — it’s increasingly important that young people understand how AI is affecting their lives now and the role that it can play in their future. 

DeepMind logo.

Experience AI is a new collaboration between the Raspberry Pi Foundation and DeepMind that aims to help young people understand how AI works and how it is changing the world. We want to inspire young people about the careers in AI and help them understand how to access those opportunities, including through their subject choices. 

Experience AI 

More than anything, we want to make AI relevant and accessible to young people from all backgrounds, and to make sure that we engage young people from backgrounds that are underrepresented in AI careers. 

The program has two strands: Inspire and Experiment. 

Inspire: To engage and inspire students about AI and its impact on the world, we are developing a set of free learning resources and materials including lesson plans, assembly packs, videos, and webinars, alongside training and support for educators. This will include an introduction to the technologies that enable AI; how AI models are trained; how to frame problems for AI to solve; the societal and ethical implications of AI; and career opportunities. All of this will be designed around real-world and relatable applications of AI, engaging a wide range of diverse interests and useful to teachers from different subjects.

In a computing classroom, two girls concentrate on their programming task.

Experiment: Building on the excitement generated through Inspire, we are also designing an AI challenge that will support young people to experiment with AI technologies and explore how these can be used to solve real-world problems. This will provide an opportunity for students to get hands-on with technology and data, along with support for educators. 

Our initial focus is learners aged 11 to 14 in the UK. We are working with teachers, students, and DeepMind engineers to ensure that the materials and learning experiences are engaging and accessible to all, and that they reflect the latest AI technologies and their application.

A woman teacher helps a young person with a coding project.

As with all of our work, we want to be research-led and the Raspberry Pi Foundation research team has been working over the past year to understand the latest research on what works in AI education.

Next steps 

Development of the Inspire learning materials is underway now, and we will release the whole set of resources early in 2023. Throughout 2023, we will design and pilot the Experiment challenge.

If you want to stay up to date with Experience AI, or if you’d like to be involved in testing the materials, fill in this form to register your interest.

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Introducing raspberrypi.com

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/introducing-raspberrypicom/

I am delighted to announce the launch of raspberrypi.com — a new website dedicated to Raspberry Pi computers and associated technologies. Head on over to find all about our low-cost, high-performance PCs, add-on boards or HATs, microcontrollers, accessories, and much more. 

As well as being able to learn about and purchase the full range of hardware products, on the new website you can download our latest software, find detailed technical documentation, connect with the community on the forums, and read the latest news about Raspberry Pi technologies and how they’re being used to change the world. 

What’s changing at raspberrypi.org

This website (raspberrypi.org) will continue to be the home for the Raspberry Pi Foundation and all of our educational initiatives to help young people learn about computers and how to create with digital technologies.

That includes online resources to help young people learn how to code, information about our networks of Code Clubs and CoderDojos, training and support for teachers and other educators, and access to the world’s leading-edge research into computing education.

You’ll still be able to find loads of resources about Raspberry Pi computers in education, and cool opportunities for young people to learn how to code and create with Raspberry Pi technologies, whether that’s our space programme Astro Pi, or building robots with Raspberry Pi Pico.

Why the change?

When raspberrypi.org was first launched as a WordPress blog in 2011, we were talking about a low-cost, programmable computer that was being designed for education. 

Fast-forward a decade, and we are now speaking about an increasingly broad range of technology and education products and services to industry, hobbyists, educators, researchers, and young people. While there is lots of overlap between those communities and their interests, it is becoming increasingly difficult to address everyone’s needs on one website. So this change is really all about making life easier for you. 

We will continue to provide lots of links and connections between the two sites to make sure that you can easily find what you’re looking for. As ever, we’d love to hear your feedback in the comments below. 

Connect with us on our new social media channels

Alongside the changes to the websites, we’re also launching new social channels that are focused on the Foundation’s educational initiatives. We look forward to seeing you there.

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Introducing the Raspberry Pi Computing Education Research Centre

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/raspberry-pi-computing-education-research-centre-university-of-cambridge/

I am delighted to announce the creation of the Raspberry Pi Computing Education Research Centre at the University of Cambridge.

University of Cambridge logo

With computers and digital technologies increasingly shaping all of our lives, it’s more important than ever that every young person, whatever their background or circumstances, has meaningful opportunities to learn about how computers work and how to create with them. That’s our mission at the Raspberry Pi Foundation.

Woman computing teacher and young female student at a laptop.
The Raspberry Pi Computing Education Research Centre will work with educators to translate its research into practice and effect positive change in learners’ lives.

Why research matters

Compared to subjects like mathematics, computing is a relatively new field and, while there are enduring principles and concepts, it’s a subject that’s changing all the time as the pace of innovation accelerates. If we’re honest, we just don’t know enough about what works in computing education, and there isn’t nearly enough investment in high-quality research.

Two teenagers sit at laptops in a computing classroom.
We need research to find the best ways of teaching young people how computers work and how to create with them.

That’s why research and evidence has always been a priority for the Raspberry Pi Foundation, from rigorously evaluating our own programmes and running structured experiments to test what works in areas like gender balance in computing, to providing a platform for the world’s best computing education researchers to share their findings through our seminar series. 

Through our research activities we hope to make a contribution to the field of computing education and, as an operating foundation working with tens of thousands of educators and millions of learners every year, we’re uniquely well-placed to translate that research into practice. You can read more about our research work here.

The Raspberry Pi Computing Education Research Centre 

The new Research Centre is a joint initiative between the University of Cambridge and the Raspberry Pi Foundation, and builds on our longstanding partnership with the Department of Computer Science and Technology. That partnership goes all the way back to 2008, to the creation of the Raspberry Pi Foundation and the invention of the Raspberry Pi computer. More recently, we have collaborated on Isaac Computer Science, an online platform that is already being used by more than 2500 teachers and 36,000 students of A level Computer Science in England, and that we will shortly expand to cover GCSE content.

Woman computing teacher and female students at a computer.
Computers and digital technologies shape our lives and society — how do we make sure young people have the skills to use them to solve problems?

Through the Raspberry Pi Computing Education Research Centre, we want to increase understanding of what works in teaching and learning computing, with a particular focus on young people who come from backgrounds that are traditionally underrepresented in the field of computing or who experience educational disadvantage.

The Research Centre will combine expertise from both institutions, undertaking rigorous original research and working directly with teachers and other educators to translate that research into practice and effect positive change in young peoples’ lives.

The scope will be computing education — the teaching and learning of computing, computer science, digital making, and wider digital skills — for school-aged young people in primary and secondary education, colleges, and non-formal settings.

We’re starting with three broad themes: 

  • Computing curricula, pedagogy, and assessment, including teacher professional development and the learning and teaching process
  • The role of non-formal learning in computing and digital making learning, including self-directed learning and extra-curricular programmes
  • Understanding and removing the barriers to computing education, including the factors that stand in the way of young people’s engagement and progression in computing education

While we’re based in the UK and expect to run a number of research projects here, we are eager to establish collaborations with universities and researchers in other countries, including the USA and India. 

Get involved

We’re really excited about this next chapter in our research work, and doubly excited to be working with the brilliant team at the Department of Computer Science and Technology. 

If you’d like to find out more or get involved in supporting the new Computing Education Research Centre, please subscribe to our research newsletter or email [email protected].

You can also join our free monthly research seminars.

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Closing the digital divide with Raspberry Pi computers

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/closing-the-digital-divide-with-raspberry-pi-computers/

One of the harsh lessons we learned last year was that far too many young people still don’t have a computer for learning at home. There has always been a digital divide; the pandemic has just put it centre-stage. The good news is that the cost of solving this problem is now trivial compared to the cost of allowing it to persist.

A young person receives a Raspberry Pi kit to learn at home

Removing price as a barrier to anyone owning a computer was part of the founding mission of Raspberry Pi, which is why we so work hard to make sure that Raspberry Pi computers are as low-cost as possible for everyone, all of the time. We saw an incredible rise in the numbers of people — particularly young people — using Raspberry Pi computers as their main desktop PC during the lockdown, helped by the timely arrival of the fabulous Raspberry Pi 400.

Supporting the most vulnerable young people

As part of our response to the pandemic, the Raspberry Pi Foundation teamed up with UK Youth and a network of grassroots youth and community organisations to get Raspberry Pi desktop kits (with monitors, webcams, and headphones) into the hands of disadvantaged young people across the UK. These were young people who didn’t qualify for the government laptop scheme and who otherwise didn’t have a computer to learn at home.

A young person receives a Raspberry Pi kit to learn at home

This wasn’t just about shipping hardware (that’s the easy bit). We trained youth workers and teachers, and we worked closely with families to make sure that they could set up and use the computers. We did a huge amount of work to make sure that the educational platforms and apps they needed worked out of the box, and we provided a customised operating system image with free educational resources and enhanced parental controls.

A screenshot of a video call gallery with 23 participants
One of our training calls for the adults who will be supporting young people and families to use the Raspberry Pi kits

The impact has been immediate: young people engaging with learning; parents who reported positive changes in their children’s attitude and behaviour; youth and social workers who have deepened their relationship with families, enabling them to provide better support.

You can read more about the impact we’re having in the evaluation report for the first phases of the programme, which we published last week.

Thank you to our supporters

After a successful pilot programme generously funded by the Bloomfield Trust, we launched the Learn at Home fundraising campaign in December, inviting businesses and individuals to donate money to enable us to expand the programme. I am absolutely thrilled that more than 70 organisations and individuals have so far donated an incredible £900,000 and we are on track to deliver our 5000th Raspberry Pi kit in March.

Two young girls unpack a computer display
Thanks to Gillas Lane Primary Academy for collecting some wonderful photos and quotes illustrating the impact our computers are having!

While the pandemic shone a bright spotlight onto the digital divide, this isn’t just a problem while we are in lockdown. We’ve known for a long time that having a computer to learn at home can be transformational for any young person.

If you would like to get involved in helping us make sure that every young person has access to a computer to learn at home, we’d love to hear from you. Find out more details on our website, or email us at [email protected].

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Creative projects for young digital makers

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/creative-projects-for-young-digital-makers/

With so many people all over the world still living in various levels of lockdown, we’ve been working hard to provide free, creative project resources for you to keep young digital makers occupied, learning, and most importantly having fun.

Two siblings sit on a sofa looking at a laptop

As a dad of two, I know how useful it is to have resources and project ideas for things that we can do together, or that the kids can crack on with independently. As we head into the weekend, I thought I’d share a few ideas for where to get started. 

Coding and digital making projects

We offer hundreds of self-guided projects for learning to create with code using tools like Scratch, Python, and more. The projects can be completed online on any computer, they are tailored for different levels of experience, and they include step-by-step guidance that quickly leads to confident, independent young digital makers.

animation of butterflies fluttering around a forest clearing
You can code a butterfly garden with one of our ‘Look after yourself’ projects!

We recently launched a new set of beginner Scratch projects on the theme of ‘Look after yourself’, which include activities designed to help young people take care of their own wellbeing while getting creative with code. They are brilliant.

“I am so excited by the [‘Look after yourself’] projects on offer. It couldn’t be more perfect for everything we are navigating right now.”

– teacher in Scotland

We offer lots of project ideas for the more advanced learners too, including a new set of Python machine learning projects.

With spring in the air here in Cambridge, UK, my kids and I are planning on building a new Raspberry Pi–powered nature camera this weekend. What will you make? 

Send a message to astronauts in space

If Earth is getting you down, then how about creating code that will be sent to the International Space Station?

This is where your kids’ code could run aboard the ISS!

As part of Astro Pi Mission Zero, young people up to age 14 can write a Python program to send their own personal message to the astronauts aboard the ISS. Mission Zero takes about an hour to complete online following a step-by-step guide. It’s a fantastic activity for anyone looking to write Python code for the first time!

Make a cool project 

We know that motivation matters. Young digital makers often need a goal to work towards, and that’s where Coolest Projects comes in. It’s the world-leading technology showcase where young digital makers show the world what they’ve created and inspire each other.

Coolest Projects is open to young people up to the age of 18, all over the world, with any level of experience or skills. Young people can register their project ideas now and then create their project so that they can share it with the world on our online gallery. 

It’s a brilliant way to motivate your young digital makers to come up with an idea and make it real. If you’re looking for inspiration, then check out the brilliant projects from last year.

Happy digital making!

I hope that these resources and project ideas inspire you and your kids to get creative with technology, whether you’re in lockdown or not. Stay safe and be kind to yourself and each other. We’ll get through this.

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Learning at home with the Raspberry Pi Foundation

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/learning-at-home-with-the-raspberry-pi-foundation/

As the UK — like many countries around the world — kicks off the new year with another national lockdown, meaning that millions of young people are unable to attend school, I want to share an update on how the Raspberry Pi Foundation is helping young people to learn at home.

Please help us spread the word to teachers, school leaders, governors, parents, and carers. Everything we are offering here is 100% free and the more people know about it, the more young people will benefit.

A girl and mother doing a homeschooling lesson at a laptop

Supporting teachers and pupils 

Schools and teachers all over the world have been doing a heroic job over the past ten months, managing the transition to emergency remote teaching during the first round of lockdowns, supporting the most vulnerable pupils, dealing with uncertainty, changing the way that schools worked to welcome pupils back safely, helping pupils catch up with lost learning, and much, much more.

Both in my role as Chief Executive of the Raspberry Pi Foundation and as chair of governors at a state school here in Cambridge, I’ve seen first-hand the immense pressure that schools and teachers are under. I’ve also seen them display the most amazing resilience, commitment, and innovation. I want to say a huge thank you to all teachers and school staff for everything you’ve done and continue to do to help young people through this crisis. 

Here’s some of the resources and tools that we’ve created to help you continue to deliver a world-class computing education: 

  • The Teach Computing Curriculum is a comprehensive set of lesson plans for KS1–4 (learners aged 5–16) as well as homework, progression mapping, and assessment materials.
  • Working with the fabulous Oak National Academy, we’ve produced 100 hours of video for 300 video lessons based on the Teach Computing Curriculum.
  • Isaac Computer Science is our online learning platform for advanced computer science (A level, learners aged 16–18) and includes comprehensive, interactive materials and videos. It also allows you to set your learners self-marking questions. 

All of these resources are mapped to the English computing curriculum and produced as part of the National Centre for Computing Education. They are available for everyone, anywhere in the world, for free. 

Making something fun with code

Parents and carers are the other heroes of remote learning during lockdown. I know from personal experience that juggling work and supporting home learning can be really tough, and we’re all trying to find meaningful, fun alternatives to letting our kids binge YouTube or Netflix (other video platforms and streaming services are available).

That’s why we’ve been working really hard to provide parents and carers with easy, accessible ways for you to help your young digital makers to get creative with technology:

A Coolest Projects participant

Getting computers into the hands of young people who need them 

One of the harsh lessons we learned last year was that far too many young people don’t have a computer for learning at home. There has always been a digital divide; the pandemic has just put it centre-stage. The good news is that the cost of solving this problem is now trivial compared to the cost of allowing it to persist.

That’s why the Raspberry Pi Foundation has teamed up with UK Youth and a network of grassroots youth and community organisations to get computers into the hands of disadvantaged young people across the UK.

A young person receives a Raspberry Pi kit to learn at home

For under £200 we can provide a vulnerable child with everything they need to learn at home, including a Raspberry Pi desktop computer, a monitor, a webcam, free educational software, and ongoing support from a local youth worker and the Foundation team. So far, we have managed to get 2000 Raspberry Pi computers into the hands of the most vulnerable young people in the UK. A drop in the ocean compared to the size of the problem, but a huge impact for every single young person and family.

This has only been possible thanks to the generous support of individuals, foundations, and businesses that have donated to support our work. If you’d like to get involved too, you can find out more here.

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New Chair and Trustees of the Raspberry Pi Foundation

Post Syndicated from Philip Colligan original https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/new-chair-and-trustees-foundation/

I am delighted to share the news that we have appointed a new Chair and Trustees of the Raspberry Pi Foundation. Between them, they bring an enormous range of experience and expertise to what is already a fantastic Board of Trustees, and I am really looking forward to working with them.

New Chair of the Board of Trustees: John Lazar 

John Lazar has been appointed as the new Chair of the Board of Trustees. John is a software engineer and business leader who is focused on combining technology and entrepreneurship to generate lasting positive impact.

Formerly the Chairman and CEO of Metaswitch Networks, John is now an angel investor, startup mentor, non-executive chairman and board director, including serving as the Chair of What3Words. He is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and played an active role in developing the programme of study for England’s school Computer Science curriculum. John has also spent many years working on tech-related non-profit initiatives in Africa and co-founded Enza Capital, which invests in early-stage African technology companies that solve pressing problems.

John takes over the Chair from David Cleevely, who has reached the end of his two three-year terms as Trustee and Chair of the Foundation. David has made a huge contribution to the Foundation over that time, and we are delighted that he will continue to be involved in our work as one of the founding members of the Supporters Club.

New Trustees: Amali de Alwis, Charles Leadbeater, Dan Labbad

Alongside John, we are welcoming three new Trustees to the Board of Trustees: 

  • Amali de Alwis is the UK Managing Director of Microsoft for Startups, and is the former CEO of Code First: Girls. She is also a Board member at Ada National College for Digital Skills, sits on the Diversity & Inclusion Board at the Institute of Coding, is an Advisory Board member at the Founders Academy, and was a founding member at Tech Talent Charter.
  • Charles Leadbeater is an independent author, a social entrepreneur, and a leading authority on innovation and creativity. He has advised companies, cities, and governments around the world on innovation strategy and has researched and written extensively on innovation in education. Charles is also a Trustee of the Paul Hamlyn Foundation.
  • Dan Labbad is Chief Executive and Executive Member of the Board of The Crown Estate. He was previously at Lendlease, where he was Chief Executive Officer of Europe from 2009. Dan is also a Director of The Hornery Institute and Ark Schools.

New Member: Suranga Chandratillake 

I am also delighted to announce that we have appointed Suranga Chandratillake as a Member of the Raspberry Pi Foundation. Suranga is a technologist, entrepreneur, and investor.

Suranga Chandratillake

He founded the intelligent search company blinkx and is now a General Partner at Balderton Capital. Suranga is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader, and he serves on the UK Government’s Council for Science and Technology.

What is a Board of Trustees anyway? 

As a charity, the Raspberry Pi Foundation is governed by a Board of Trustees that is ultimately responsible for what we do and how we are run. It is the Trustees’ job to make sure that we are focused on our mission, which for us means helping more people learn about computing, computer science, and related subjects. The Trustees also have all the usual responsibilities of company directors, including making sure that we use our resources effectively. As Chief Executive, I am accountable to the Board of Trustees. 

We’ve always been fortunate to attract the most amazing people to serve as Trustees and, as volunteers, they are incredibly generous with their time, sharing their expertise and experience on a wide range of issues. They are an important part of the team. Trustees serve for up to two terms of three years so that we always have fresh views and experience to draw on.

How do you appoint Trustees? 

Appointments to the Board of Trustees follow open recruitment and selection processes that are overseen by the Foundation’s Nominations Committee, supported by independent external advisers. Our aim is to appoint Trustees who bring different backgrounds, perspectives, and lived experience, as well as a range of skills. As with all appointments, we consider diversity at every aspect of the recruitment and selection processes.

Formally, Trustees are elected by the Foundation’s Members at our Annual General Meeting. This year’s AGM took place last week on Zoom. Members are also volunteers, and they play an important role in holding the Board of Trustees to account, helping to shape our strategy, and acting as advocates for our mission.

You can see the full list of Trustees and Members on our website.

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