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Tech industry titans urge US to better fund computer science

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Jeff Bezos, Tim Cook and Mark Zuckerberg (pictured) were among tech titans who joined school officials, non-profits and state leaders to urge the US government to better back teaching computer science.

[SAN FRANCISCO] Jeff Bezos, Tim Cook and Mark Zuckerberg were among tech titans who joined school officials, non-profits and state leaders to urge the US government to better back teaching computer science.

The heads of Amazon, Apple and Facebook were among powerhouse names Tuesday on an open letter as well as a petition online at change.org calling for the US to become a leader in computer science education in public schools.

"Whether a student aspires to be a software engineer, or if she just wants a well-rounded education in today's changing world, access to computer science in school is an economic imperative for our nation to remain competitive," read a petition aimed at the US Congress.

"And with the growing threat of cyber warfare, this is even a critical matter of national security."

The more than 5,800 names on the petition as of Tuesday included top corporate executives from an array of industries, and governors of more than two dozen US states.

Backers of the petition also stated their case in an open letter to Congress, asking for funding to provide "every student in every school the opportunity to learn computer science.

Microsoft and Google along with Amazon founder Bezos and Mark Zuckerberg and his wife were among supporters who pledge a combined total of US$48 million in contributions to increase access to computer science education, according to a release.

AFP