New Google programme to teach South African students to code

Google South Africa has launched CS First, a new programme aimed at equipping South African learners with the fundamentals of computer science, including coding.

Google said that the programme aims to train more than 30,000 learners across nine provinces in the space of a year, and will target learners in grades 4 to 8, although it may also be useful for learners up to grade 10.

As part of the programme, students will watch instructional videos while simultaneously building projects in Scratch (, a blocks-based programming language.

The company said that 70% of its CS First training will be in public schools and 10% in special needs schools.

“If South Africa is to compete globally, its learners need to have a strong digital skills base,” said Fortune Mgwili-Sibanda, policy and government affairs, Google South Africa.

Some of the projects available in the current curriculum include:

  • Various coding projects;
  • Animation;
  • How to conceive and pitch a project;
  • Presentation skills;
  • Storytelling;
  • Music and sound design;
  • Simulation.

Read: South Africa is getting new ‘technical’ schools – here’s what you need to know

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New Google programme to teach South African students to code