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What is Google Apps for Education?

Google Apps for Education is a suite of web-based programs providing email, word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, calendaring, research, and collaboration tools for all DCSD students and teachers.

What programs are available through Google Apps for Education?

DCSD’s Google Apps for Education may include Gmail, Calendar, Docs, and Sites among others. Each school determines the tools that best suit that school’s educational environment.

I thought only students over 13 could have access to email. Will GMail and Google Apps be available to elementary students?

Yes and no.  

Students under 13 ordinarily need parent permission to have email accounts, however COPPA allows DCSD to act as the parents' agent and approve the accounts on their behalf. To be COPPA compliant, we must provide an opt out process and have done that (see bottom of the page) so all students will have Google Apps accounts (including GMail) built in DCSD's private domain.

Please check your school's website for more information about which Google services they will use.

How will Google Apps for Education be used in my child’s school?

Google Apps for Education aligns with international standards for technology integration, as well as with the DCSD’s Board of Education’s End Statements and the DCSD Strategic Plan. A full suite of tools will be available for all DCSD schools. 

It is up to each school to decide which tools are most appropriate for its individual educational setting. Contact your school to learn more about how Google Apps will be used at your student’s school.

How will DCSD’s Google Apps for Education be accessed?

Apps for Education runs on an Internet domain purchased and owned by Douglas County School District and is intended for educational use only. As a cloud-based suite, Apps for Education will be available at school and at home via the web.

Does Google Apps for Education filter content?

Yes. DCSD has instituted a very strict content filter for Google Apps, however, there is always a chance students will be exposed to inappropriate content. While at school, staff will monitor students’ use of Google Apps. Please monitor your student’s use of Google Apps while at home. At all times, whether at school or home, students are responsible for their adherence to DCSD’s Code of Conduct.

What types of safety and security measures are in place for Google Apps for Education?

DCSD’s Google Apps for Education complies with legal requirements for safety and security such as the Child Internet Protection Act (CIPA), Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

In addition, DCSD commits to the following regarding student privacy:

  • Not to publish confidential education records (grades, student ID numbers, etc.) for public viewing on the Internet
  • To adhere to the Parent/Guardian Media Consent form and to appropriately limit public access to student work and/or photographs
  • To provide DCSD parents or legal guardians with the ability and right to investigate the contents of their students’ email accounts and Google Apps for Education files

Will I have access to my student’s email account?

The Google Apps for Education accounts are property of Douglas County School District. This means that content in these accounts may be accessed or searched by delegated DCSD employees (IT Staff, Administrators, etc.) in accordance with Board of Education Policy JIH. 

As the provider of these services, Douglas County School District has included several safety and educational features in Google Apps for Education.
  • Parents, guardians, and administrators will have access to student’s Google Apps account including login information made available through Infinite Campus’ Parent Portal
  • Filters to block SPAM, viruses and inappropriate content
  • Parent, Guardian and Administrator ability to review all student emails

What if I just am not comfortable with my student having a Google account?  Can I opt-out?

We want you to be involved with your student's education.  To discuss how Google Apps for Education will be used at your child's school, please call your school.  A delegate from the school will be happy to answer your questions and help you to understand your options.  
If you still feel it would be best for your child not to utilize these tools, the delegate will make sure that your student's account in Infinite Campus (IC) is flagged and that his or her Google account is deactivated.  By default these IC flags are cleared at the end of each school year.  If you would like to keep your student's Google account inactive, just call the school again at the start of the next school year and the flag will be returned to the account.

What happens if students misuse their Google Accounts?

The same expectations for acceptable use of technology (as outlined in the student Code of Conduct) apply to Google Apps for Education accounts.  Students who misuse their accounts will be referred to their school's administrator who will deal with any infraction on a case-by-case basis.  Administrators may choose to suspend student access to GMail (preserving access to Docs and Sites for classroom use) or may choose to suspend a student's account privileges entirely for a length of time appropriate to the offense.  Parents will be notified should their student's account access be altered or suspended.