When someone picks a moniker containing the words "media" and "kill", it's pretty obvious they're not really interested in being informed or helping to inform others. The mods here can't call a spade a spade for political correctness reasons, but I'm (in)famous for doing so and have no qualms about it.
It took me a while to realize that the Foundation has been focused on fixing a problem in their own back yard (starting with CS candidates entering Cambridge University). They have been surprised, fascinated, horrified, and delighted to discover that their efforts to develop the Pi have been of intense interest to a wide variety of hobbyists, educators, students, and others around the world, to the point where the millionth Pi will soon be shipped and there's no end in demand in sight. From this evidence, it's pretty clear that the Pi system doesn't need to be "pushed" on anyone. This system includes both the hardware and the much more complex and broad selection of over 30,000 software packages, along with educational materials, training, etc., with the latter all being available at no direct financial cost.
The UK isn't the only place where the proliferation of proprietary commodity computing and game systems has resulted in an intellectual wasteland in the knowledge of computing fundamentals. The same thing is happening in public schools all over the U.S., even here in Silicon Valley - the benefactors of selling those proprietary systems put their kids in very expensive private or extremely limited numbers of public magnet/technology/etc., schools that just happen to be located in their neighborhoods.
If you look at where growth in computing has been heading the past decade, it's not in yet-more mundane office desktop or laptop systems with needlessly-increasing complex and expensive hardware and software. No typical office worker or home user of computing technology really needs a 64-bit system equipped with a multi-core CPU, GBs of RAM, TBs of disk space, Gb/s networking, and vast amounts of floating-point hardware capability, yet that's pretty much all that's offered. Meanwhile, people in the real world are flocking to mobile devices with touchscreens, high-speed networking, and just enough computing power, RAM, and flash memory to be sufficiently useful for most computing tasks such as e-mail, web access, and average levels of content generation (e.g., word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, image, video, etc., files).
Tablets are going to replace shredded-tree-based books if for no other reason than economics - school textbooks cost so much they have to last 10 years, and are thus out-of-date at least half of that period of time, on average. The fact that tablets can be used for many more things is just icing on the cake, but for completely valid stability reasons they're designed to not be used for software development or interfacing with the real world the way the Pi very specifically is.
The Pi can adequately run the open-source alternatives to the office style applications currently used in businesses, government, etc., so claiming that such software can only be run on a proprietary commodity computing platform is not valid. No, you can't have 100 tabs open in a browser, or scores of office documents opened for editing, but that's not what's needed in a classroom environment where the system is going to get shut down and wiped within a couple of hours in preparation for the next class. Now, more commonly, business desktop and laptop computing systems are just a notch above dumb terminals of Yesteryear, where most software and content files are stored on cloud servers and accessed remotely as needed.
As for whether everyone should learn programming, the real question is "What kinds of programming should everyone understand?" When I was a budding ocean engineer in the 1970s, one of my professors told our class that within 10 years there would be two kinds of engineers - those who understood how to use computing to perform engineering and those who were unemployed. All of my high school friends who went into STEM fields who didn't learn software development eventually all had to find work doing something else, typically in education (mostly because of the generous benefits and better-than-average pay compared with being chronically unemployed).
It would do a world of good for all students (of all ages) to learn the discipline associated with software development, which is comprised of a lot more than just writing code (programming). In fact, only about 15% of a typical software developer's time is spent programming. The vast majority of time is spent defining what the software really needs to do. It includes organizing the associated data into appropriate structures (which may or may not include formal databases). Crafting effective user interfaces involves more psychology and artistic design than technical factors. Testing and debugging requires analytical skills well beyond just understanding what code is actually doing, vs. what it's supposed to be doing. Documentation of the delivered software installation, configuration, operation, and end-user experience is a very large effort that involves software developers at least part-time even if someone else is responsible for editing and publishing the documentation.
The manufacturing laborers of the future aren't going to be doing very much actual fabrication and assembly by hand - robots are finally making inroads in factories as costs have continued to plummet and capabilities have remained headed skyward. Workers in places like China need to start looking over their shoulders because even they can't undercut the less-than-a-dollar-an-hour cost of robots. Check out Rethink Robotics Inc.'s, Baxter
, a $22,000 industrial robot that can be taught how to perform its tasks by an average person (http://www.rethinkrobotics.com/index.ph ... cts/baxter
). Increasing numbers of jobs are going to require telling computing and robotics systems what to do and how to do it, and the Pi is an excellent entree into that area because it has more than enough processing ability (especially the GPU, very useful for simulation and maneuvering in three dimensions). The GPIO interface provides precisely the kinds of input/output capabilities needed to learn basic robotics and other interfaces to the real world.
The Pi is going to enter education through side doors, not the loading dock controlled by a bloated IT fiefdom with a vested interest in their boats' gunwales not getting wet due to rocking. It's starting with computing clubs, coding dojos, Maker.com and Meetup.com events, tech shops, and a variety of other volunteer educator, parent, and student events. If some people don't care about being unemployed after school, then they don't need to worry about learning anything about computing fundamentals. At least the cost of technology like that in the Pi will only continue to decrease as its capabilities increase and non-participants won't have to shell out any more than the current price of the Pi.
If you want more details about what it's really like in today's classrooms, let me know, because that's where I'm currently spending my time teaching kids, their parents, and their teachers about all of the above and much, much more (including basic STEM concepts).