FAQ


What does Google Apps for Education (GAFE) cost?
No cost to qualified K-12 and higher education institutions in the United States.

How much storage do you get with GAFE?
Each GAFE user has 30 GB of storage for all their GAFE data.

What is the reliability for GAFE?
Google's data centers are designed and built for their GAFE and don’t include unnecessary hardware or software. This reduces the number of potentially exploitable vulnerabilities. Google guarantees 99.9% uptime and build-in robust disaster recovery even from natural disasters.

How can I check the status of Google services?
Google offers a dashboard to check the status of its services.
http://www.google.com/appsstatus#hl=en&v=status


How secure is data in Google's storage cloud?
An independent third party auditor issued Google Apps an unqualified SSAE 16 and ISAE 3402 Type II audit opinion. The school's data is secure under the SSAE 16 and ISAE 3402 auditing industry standards. Two-factor authentication can also be configured and implemented per user.

Google has gone to great lengths to protect against threats. Google runs its data centers using custom hardware running a custom OS and filesystem. Each of these systems has been optimized for security and performance. The Google Security Team works with external parties to constantly test and enhance security infrastructure to ensure it is impervious to external attackers. Because Google controls the entire stack running their systems, they are able to quickly respond to any threats or weaknesses that may emerge.

Google maintains a number of geographically distributed data centers. Google’s computing clusters are designed with resiliency and redundancy in mind, eliminating single points of failure and minimizing the impact of common equipment failures and environmental risks. Access to their data centers is restricted to authorized Google personnel.


Is it safe to access GAGE over the Internet?
GAFE is configured to use HTTPS encrypted tunnels when sending and receiving data. This helps ensure that no one except the user has access to his or her data. This is true for access to Gmail, Galendar, and Chat, Drive and Sites data via your web browser. The mobile email client also uses encrypted access to ensure the privacy of communications. Google also requires encryption when accessing email by third-party email clients.

Do Google Apps users lose data if their computing device is lost, stolen or damaged?
All your data is automatically backed up on Google servers. So when something happen – if your computing device is lost, crashes or gets stolen – you can be up and running again in seconds by using another functioning computing device.

What about the privacy of my data?
Any data you put into Google Apps is yours, and it says just that in our contract with Google. Your information is safe from other organizations, even though it's all on the same servers. GAFE tools help the school's Google administrator manage users, documents and services, and keep track of usage and data via dashboards. And of course you fully own the data - not Google. You can take your data with you if you choose to use external services in conjunction with GAFE or stop using GAFE altogether.


Will Google mine or share my data?
No scanning. No mining. Google Apps is governed by a detailed Privacy Policy, which ensures they will not inappropriately share or use personal information placed in the school's systems. Google complies with applicable US privacy law, and the Google Apps Terms of Service can specifically detail their obligations and compliance with FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) regulations.


Can I share my data with others?
GAFE includes dozens of critical security features specifically designed to keep your data safe, secure and in your control. Your data belongs to you. The Google Apps tools enable you to control access to your data, including who you share it with and how you share it.


Will teachers or students see any ads in GAFE applications?
No ads. None. Zilch.


What about email security issues like spam, malware, and phishing attacks?
Google has one of the best spam blockers in the business, and it's integrated into Google Apps. Spam is detected, stored in a spam folder (for you to optionally review), and automatically purged every 30 days. Google has built in virus checking which scans documents before allowing a user to download any message. Most computer viruses are contained in executable files. Google blocks viruses in the most direct possible way by not allowing users to receive executable files or compressed files that could contain damaging executable code.


How often are the apps in GAFE updated with new features or bugs patched?
New features are released and made available weekly on Tuesdays. At least a one-week advance notice to users is provided for any new feature or bug patch.


What happens when Internet access is lost?
All data is automatically backed up on Google servers. If your computing device crashes or an Internet connection is lost - your data is not lost. When your computing device recovers or the Internet connection is reestablished, then you can pickup just where you left off.


What happens when Internet access is not available?
Unlike traditional SaaS applications GAFE when used in conjunction with the Google Chrome web browser does provides off-line functionality. The Offline Google Mail app for Chrome lets users read and write email without an Internet connection. Drafted messages are sent next time there is an Internet connection. Using the Drive Chrome web app, you can access Docs, Sheets and Slides online and enable offline editing. On the web, you can edit Docs, Sheets, Slides and Drawings offline. On mobile you can edit both Docs and Sheets offline.


Where do I get help if I have a problem or question with GAFE?
Remember GAFE is designed to be self-service. First step - Check the built-in online help features.
Only then should you contact your school's Technology Coordinator for assistance.

Notice to Parents:

If you need to email any information to the office concerning your child, instead of emailing an individual secretary please email to this address:
hcs.office@sau24.org.
This will assure that your message will reach more than one person in our office in case someone is absent. Thank you.   

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