Schools everywhere are working on ways to make it easier for kids to access documents needed for homework and classroom assignments. One of the services utilized is called Google Apps for Education. This is a cloud service that makes it possible for students to retrieve everything from a school calendar to email, from any device with an Internet connection.
This makes it possible for kids to begin a project in a classroom setting and complete it in the comfort of their own home. In some cases, real-time interactive learning is also part of the process. This is just another way technology has been added to the educational process.
The Administrator – Unlimited Access
Each school that signs up for the Google Apps for Education selects an administrator who manages the services. Students are assigned login information, which includes an email address and password. The administrator has full access to the student’s account.
Full access includes everything – not just access to typical schoolwork assignments. In other words, no matter what a kid adds to the account, the administrator will be able to see and read it. This is especially important considering the fact that students will be using the account at various hours around the clock and using different computers.
Should this be a cause for concern? Most people would probably say no. After all, the purpose of the service is for school-related documents. Other information should not be added there.
And while that is agreed, it is also understood that greater effort should be taken in educating our children about certain behaviors associated with Internet use. For instance, we should stress the importance of always logging out of an account when we are finished.
In addition, it is never too early to begin talking about how to develop and maintain a great online reputation. We can talk about the importance of never posting anything online that will be degrading or hurtful to ourselves or anyone else, now or in the future. In fact, we can even show our kids how sites like Reputation.com have become so popular, based on the need for cleaning up online reputations.
The Google Apps for Education is designed for educational purposes, and that is what it should be used for. The administrator should not be troubled with monitoring other material. With that in mind, students should be taught to use other accounts for other types of communication with friends and family members.
Getting answers from the school about who the administrator is, including his/her credentials, can be reassuring. Also finding out about any policies and procedures that are in place regarding how your child’s privacy is being protected can give you peace of mind.
Schools have your child’s best interest at heart. But that doesn’t always mean they do everything right. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
What do you think? Are Google Apps for Education really a good choice when it comes to students’ assignments? If you found this article interesting, please share it with your social networks.
Contributor: Debbie Allen is a professional content writer, blogger, and online marketer. Because of her background in organizational development, she likes to write about various small business management topics, including online reputation management and marketing strategies.