Why CS in Schools?
We created CS in Schools to help Australia create the next generation of technology workers and entrepreneurs. Our ambition is to help ensure that the 2,700+ secondary schools in Australia can give every student the opportunity to learn about digital technology and how it can change our lives for the better.
It’s not just about learning how to build digital technologies, it’s about meeting real job shortages by helping students become industry-ready. Deloitte and the Australian Computer Society estimate that there will be over 100,000 new IT jobs created in Australia by 2024. With only around 7,000 university-qualified IT graduates each year, we are not a path to fill those jobs, let alone create new and exciting companies.
We believe that students aren’t choosing IT programmes because many don’t get the opportunity to study engaging digital technology courses at school. We think it’s critical for Australia’s future that we address this problem. That’s where we come in.
Our Mission and Vision
Our mission is to build a stronger Australian economy by growing the digital workforce. We are doing that by focusing on our vision of Growing the pipeline of IT professionals by delivering world-class Digital Technology professional development and resources for teachers.
In 2021, our goal is to work with 40 schools and 150 teachers in every state in Australia to help them professional develop their digital technology skills, and in turn teach over 9,000 students to code from Years 7 and 9.
CS in Schools was founded in 2018 by Hugh Williams, Selina Williams, and Kristy Kendall. After researching how they could help Australia become the next technology hub, they settled on creating a programme to build capabilities in schools to grow the next generation of technologists. They launched CS in Schools in 2018, and by the end of 2020 they had helped over 70 teachers and over 4,000 students learn DigiTech at 22 schools.
Hugh is a former tech executive at Google, Microsoft, and eBay. He has a PhD in Computer Science, and is the CEO of CS in Schools.
Selina is a former corporate finance leader with Bachelors degrees in Information Systems and Finance, and she is the COO of CS in Schools.
Kristy is the Principal of Toorak College in Victoria, an independent girls’ school. She is the Chief Education Officer at CS in Schools, and holds a Masters degree in Education.
Hugh Williams, CEO and Co-founder
Professor Hugh Williams is the CEO and Co-founder of CS in Schools
Our Industry partners
The unique advantage of CS in Schools is its deep links to industry. We work with industry partners to bring relevant content, real-world experiences, and role-modelling from professionals into the classroom. At the end of 2020, we’d placed around 60 volunteers into partnerships with teachers. Through our unique model, teachers learn content from professional experts, and become expert in themselves at teaching relevant, job-ready content to students.
We are lucky to have the strong support of Carsales, SEEK, Xero, MessageMedia, Domain, Xplor, Microsoft Philanthropy’s TEALS, and Edrolo. We’re also fortunate to be able to draw on our industry connections and experience to bring real-world examples, content, and speakers to our programmes. We are always looking for new corporate partners, and encourage you to get in touch if you can help.
Shashank Kaul, CTO of Webjet and Volunteer
Shashank is the Chief Technology Officer of Webjet and has been volunteering in 2020 at Ivanhoe Grammar school as part of our Year 7 programme.
We are working with 40 schools in 2021, and partnering with around 150 teachers to develop their professional skills and educate around 9,000 of their junior secondary students.
We work with the public, independent, and Catholic education sectors at the secondary level. We have a strong presence in regional areas. Three of our 2021 schools are girls’ schools, and the remainder are co-ed; we have a bias towards addressing the gender balance problems in the IT sector, and have committed that each year more girl students experience our courses than boys. We also have a bias towards helping rural and regional Australia, and supporting disadvantaged schools.
We typically work with multiple teachers at a school, with schools placing as many as six teachers in our programmes.
If you’d like to be part of CS in Schools, we look forward to hearing from you.
Julian Choquette, Volunteer and Product Manager at Square
Julian is a Product Manager at payments company, Square.
He is pictured here volunteering in the classroom at Eltham High School in Victoria.
Our Donors and Supporters
CS in Schools is funded by philanthropic donations. We owe deep gratitude to Leigh Jasper, investor and former CEO of Aconex, Martin Hosking, CEO and Director of Redbubble, Rob Phillpot, founder of Aconex, and Adam Lewis, investor and former McKinsey partner for their generous support of CS in Schools. Leigh and Martin have been generous donors each year since we began in 2018. We thank them for their vision in helping us create a better digital future.
We are fortunate to operate under the auspices of RMIT University. RMIT University is a Deductible Gift Recipient, which is an advantageous status for donors who wish to donate from their private ancillary fund (PAF).
Funds are spent on curriculum development, community support, workshops, research, and other programme expenses. The founders and volunteers provide their time free of charge.
Leigh Jasper, Investor and former Aconex CEO
Leigh has been a generous supporter of CS in Schools since 2018. Leigh is pictured here speaking at our 2019 awards night.
More about our community
Learn more about the team behind CS in Schools, and how we’re working together to create a brighter digital future for Australia.
If you’d like to be part of CS in Schools, we’d love to get you involved!