More than half of England’s secondary schools, 54%, do not offer GCSE computer science in 2015-16, a report from the Royal Society has found.
He urged the government to increase spending for the education computer science of ten times in the course of the next five years to ensure young people can “unlock the full potential of new technologies”.
The biggest problem was the lack of qualified teachers, the report found.
The Department of Education said more students have been the choice of the subject.
“We want to ensure our future workforce has the skills we need to drive the future productivity and the economy of this country and that is the reason why the government has made the calculation of a compulsory part of the national programme,” said a spokesman.
“The computer science GCSE entries continue to grow more rapidly than any other subject.
“We have recently seen an increase in entries for Stem subjects [science, technology, engineering and mathematics] for the English language baccalaureate (EBacc) and the number of girls in Stem subjects at a levels has increased by over 17% compared to 2010.
“Since 2012, the department has pledged 5 million pounds for the Network of Teaching Excellence in computer science program, which has built a national network of nearly 400 computer specialists (oms) for schools to commission to provide training for their teachers.”
Computer science in numbers
The number of schools that do not offer the subject at GCSE represented 30% of the total number of pupils in England
In the UK, the report found that only 11% of students in England took GCSE computer science
In 2017, only 20% of GCSE candidates in the subjects were female and the figure fell to 10%, to A level of
Bournemouth had the highest percentage of students (23%) opting to take computer science
Hartlepool, Harrow and Bracknell Forest had the highest percentage of the school that offers the subject at a-level GCSES, not including the Islands of Scilly, which has a 100% rate as it is taught in school
Two in three schools near the UK’s technology hub in East London, not to offer to pupils as a GSCE option
Other areas of London, including Islington, Kensington and Chelsea, Tower Hamlets and the City of London has also had a low percentage of schools that offer the subject
The Royal Society, the UK’s independent scientific academy, is concerned about the lack of computer skills will affect the future of the work force.
Prof Steve Furber, who worked on the report, said: “Computing teachers have told us that they feel the government rushed in a new program without giving them the support of money, or delivery.
“The report paints a bleak picture of England, which meets only 68% of the computing teacher recruitment targets, and where, consequently, one in two schools do not offer computer science at GCSE, a key stage in the education of youth.”
He added that, “review of the fragility of our computing education” would require an ambitious, multipronged approach.
The Royal Society has asked:
A Â£60 investment in computer education in the course of the next five years
The training of 8,000 secondary school computing teachers
Prof Furber opinions have been taken by technology firms Microsoft and Google, who are working to increase the computer skills among the students.
Google UK managing director Ronan Harris said: “There is still much to be done to ensure young people across the UK have access to computer science education.
“Whatever the school they attend or whatever field they plan to go in, every student should have the opportunity to understand the principles and practices of computing.”
And Microsoft UK’s chief executive Cindy Rose said: “The risk is that if we don’t make these investments now, is that many young people have difficulties to access to new opportunities and the UK loses its advantage in a world transformed by technology.”