"The success of the BBC Micro in the 1980s shows what's possible. There's no reason why Raspberry Pi shouldn't have the same impact, with the right support." That was Eric Schmidt speaking in May about the opportunity for Raspberry Pi to inspire budding computer scientists.

Today Google is backing the Raspberry Pi Foundation with more than words, by providing funding to allow 15,000 UK kids enthusiastic about computer science to get a Raspberry Pi for free.

Photo credit: Paul Beech (@guru)

To ensure no Pi is wasted, devices will be doled out with the help of six educational partners: Codeclub, Computing At School, Generating GeniusCoderdojoTeach First and OCR. Each organisation will have a supply of free Pi’s to give to children they meet who demonstrate an aptitude and passion for computing. As an added bonus, each device handed out will come with a teaching and learning pack, created by OCR, and designed to help kids dig in right away and get the most out of their Pi’s.

There’s no magic solution to the UK’s computer science education woes, but real progress is being made thanks to the combined efforts of many. Google is proud to lend our support and, we hope, a little Pi will go a long way.