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Tech’s Gender and Race Gap Starts in High School

A look at who takes the Advanced Placement computer science exam—and who doesn’t
Jim Mone

When people talk about how to diversify the tech field, a common solution is, “Start earlier.” Rather than focus on getting women and minorities hired at tech startups or encouraging them to major in computer science in college, there should be a push to turn them on to the discipline when they’re still teenagers—or even younger.

“It’s already too late,” Paul Graham, founder of the tech entrepreneur boot camp Y Combinator, said last month in a controversial interview. “What we should be doing is somehow changing the middle school computer science curriculum or something like that.”