The Micro:bit Educational Foundation has today announced that Gareth Stockdale will be joining the Foundation as CEO. Gareth joins from BBC Learning where he was joint lead for the original project that designed, developed and deployed the micro:bit to all year 7 or equivalent children in the UK, subsequently joining the Foundation board. He succeeds Zach Shelby who returns to Arm in California to continue his pioneering work on the Internet of Things. Zach will continue to support the Foundation and the micro:bit community.
The Foundation has had a great first year building on the strength of the original BBC project which empowered students, 90% of students say it helped show that anyone can code and a 70% increase in the intention of girls to take computing as an option after using a micro:bit. Following the UK project the micro:bit has successfully been launched in nearly 50 countries reaching millions of new users. National roll outs of the micro:bit have already taken place in the UK, Iceland, Croatia, and Singapore with further countries planned for 2018.
“I’m really excited about taking on the role of CEO at the Foundation, having been involved in the project from the very beginning it has been amazing to see the global appetite for the BBC micro:bit and its ability to widen participation in digital creativity at such a low cost. 2018 is going to be an ambitious and exciting year for the Foundation”, Gareth Stockdale said.
“Thanks to our incredible team and community, the micro:bit has become a global movement for youth technology education. We‘ve reached a point in history where the barrier to access technology is lower than ever, and all young people should be enabled to create wonderful solutions to problems we can‘t yet imagine,” says Zach Shelby, “As an engineer, inventor and entrepreneur I’m proud to be helping teachers and young people experience these skills.”
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