Peyton Jones has achieved worldwide recognition for his work on programming language and will now lead the work of the centre as it attempts to improve the teaching of computing and drive up participation in computer science.
A consortium made up of STEM Learning, British Computer Society (BCS) and the Raspberry Pi Foundation are delivering the work of the NCCE, backed by up to £84 million of government funding. The Centre will operate virtually, through a national network of up to 40 school-led Computing Hubs to provide training and resources to primary and secondary schools, and an intensive training programme for secondary teachers without a post A-Level qualification in computer science.
The centre will also develop an A level programme to better prepare A level students for further study and employment in digital roles. It will work with the University of Cambridge, with a further £1 million investment from Google.
Professor Peyton Jones said:
"The National Centre offers a once-in-a-generation opportunity to firmly establish computer science as a foundational subject discipline that will enable all our young people to be active participants in the complex digital world that surrounds them.
"I am delighted to have a role in translating the big vision of the new computing curriculum into a vibrant reality in every classroom in the country."
Professor Peyton Jones is a Fellow of the Royal Society. He is a Distinguished Fellow of the BCS, granted for his work to advance the development of computer science education in the UK. He is an Honorary Professor of the Computing Science Department at Glasgow University, where he was a professor in the 1990s, and he is currently a Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research.
He is also chair of Computing at School, the grassroots organisation that was at the centre of the 2014 reform of the computing curriculum, which has a membership of over 30,000 computing teachers and academics.