Chromebooks are designed to work seamlessly with Google Apps for Education products rather than Microsoft Office products. New Kent County Public Schools is using Google Apps for Education for several key reasons:
1. The computer skills that students learn on a Chromebook are easily transferable to Microsoft Office products. Google Docs are very similar to Microsoft Office products. The look may vary, but the ways in which each tool can be used are the same.
2. The use of Google Apps and cloud based computing is becoming more and more prevalent. With the rapid changes in technology, it is essential that students develop skills that can be easily transferred to new and emerging technologies.
3. Google Apps for Education provides students with access to Google products available from any machine at any time. Because Google Drive is cloud-based, students will have access to their work even if they do not have access to their Chromebook. Unlike Microsoft products, parents will not need to purchase any software. By logging in to their Google account, students will be able to access their work from any device with Internet access. Students who do not have access to the Internet can still complete their work in offline mode.
4. Microsoft Office products will be available to students on the desktop computers in the computer labs in New Kent County Schools. If a specific course requires the use of Microsoft Office, then students will have access to the needed software in school.*Web-based versions (apps) of Microsoft Office ‘Word’, ‘Excel’, ‘PowerPoint’, are available for free in the Google Chrome Store but do require a valid Windows Live Account before they can be accessed.