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G Suite Education - Enterprise Edition

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February 1, 2018

Get ready, people: Google has something new headed your way! They have recently announced that they’re going to release an Enterprise version of G Suite for Education. Some schools may never have any interest in this offering, but I'll explain what it is and why you may want to give it a look.

First. let’s start with the basics for people who aren’t using G Suite. G Suite for Education (formerly called Google Apps for Education) is Google’s suite of cloud software for your school. If your school is using Gmail, you have G Suite for Education. The suite also contains Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, etc. If you’re using Chromebooks, you're probably already wading through the Google waters and know what you have. If you don’t, reach out to me so I can come do some training for you and your teachers!

Google has now announced that an Enterprise version of G Suite for Education is coming. So what does that mean? Well, it means a version is available to you that you would pay for. But don't worry: the G Suite you have now will remain free.

So why a paid version, and why would we want it? There are some schools that still need more from Google. And since Google is already making it available to corporations, they decided they would meet demand and also make it available to schools. Let's talk about what is included in the paid version:

  • Advanced mobile device management helps large organizations proactively manage mobile BYOD devices. With new device rules for Mobile Management, G Suite admins can now define custom rules that trigger on device events, like device updates or ownership changes, and have associated actions. Additionally, admins can review audits and reports of activities on these devices, as well as securely manage work apps on a user’s device while leaving personal apps under the user’s control.
  • Cloud Search provides a unified search experience across G Suite to help users spend less time searching for information and more time deriving insights. Powered by machine intelligence, Cloud Search surfaces personalized information that helps users stay on top of important work, prepare for upcoming meetings or even suggest files that need attention.
  • Security center for G Suite brings together security analytics, actionable insights and best practice recommendations from Google so that admins can protect their organization, data and users. Admins now have access to a unified security dashboard and can reduce risk to their organization by adopting security health recommendations from Google.

These are some pretty great functionalities. Security and device management can be a big deal when we have BYOD happening. Any extra advantage is something we will take, especially when Google makes it so easy to manage their products and hardware. But one option really stood out to me:

  • Record meetings and save them to Drive. For schools wanting to capture faculty meetings or online lectures, Hangouts Meet can be used to record them and save them directly to Drive, making them readily accessible for those that weren’t able to attend.

With Google Meet (the new version of Google Hangouts), you can record meetings (or class lectures), and the video is automatically saved to Google Drive. Then you can use that video in Google Classroom to flip your classroom. You could build an entire library of lectures and let your kids access the information whenever they like.

Wouldn’t it be great if your students could watch the video outside class and you could spend your time together working? Or maybe you want to share a teacher with a neighboring district. It would be so easy with this option.

Further, if you have a strong teacher in one building or grade and a new teacher in another, you could help the other teacher by giving him/her access to the content. I could go on and on, but you get the idea. 

The good news is that this is going to be available soon. The downside is that it’s going to cost. What that cost is, we don’t know yet, but we should know soon. If you’re interested, let me know and I’ll help you walk down that road. If you still want to record lessons and don’t want to mess with Enterprise, there are some fun ways to use YouTube to accomplish the same kind of things. I would love to work with you on a project like this!

About the Author

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Ben Parker

Director, Technology

Ben serves as Director of Technology for the OPSRC. In this role, he will provide support to schools on technical issues and training on pressing technology topics. Ben will assist partner schools with trainings, comprehensive technology plans, e-Rate applications, technology purchasing consultation, and other school and district technology decisions.

Prior to working with OPSRC, Ben was the Director of Technology for the Locust Grove Public School District. Ben implemented a 1:1 tablet program in Locust Grove that saw 6th-12th graders go paperless in the classroom.

In his free time, Ben likes to read and play the drums.

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