Google Apps for Education Hits the Langley School District!
STANDARDS ADDRESSED: S2, S5, S6, T2, T3, T4
The Langley School District gained its first Google Apps for Education (GAFE) school when I introduced it to West Langley Elementary in September of 2013. Since then, 3 others elementary schools are in the process of adopting or have adopted GAFE, and my principal and I are working to get our feeder high school on board as well.
Why hasn’t GAFE been present in Langley Schools before?
The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (BC) has been a long-standing obstacle to educators using out-of-country cloud-based technology services with students in British Columbia. There is an extensive amount of uncertainty from educators with the use of these tools due to fear of posting the wrong things on the services that they use. Our solutions at West Langley involved extensive parent communication and transparency, working closely with the community to ensure student safety and protection of evaluation data, identity, and personal information. I continue to work closely with teachers to ensure that the information they are pushing to the cloud has the safety of each of our students in mind in compliance to our provincial law.
How do the students and teachers feel now?
Students absolutely love having access to Google Apps! Our pilot has begun with simply using Drive and Docs to store and share folders and individual files, as well as to collaborate together both synchronously and asynchronously. Feedback is made easy for teachers with use of the easy-to-use sharing and commenting features. This digital tool has spoken for itself as students are no longer relying on physical data storage units such as flashdrives to store assignments, completion times are reinforced by monitoring revision histories, and qualitative feedback is plentiful and timely.
Other S6 Standards