Microsoft New Zealand welcomed the three-year renewal of its school agreement with the Ministry of Education, with a focus on strengthening cybersecurity.
The deal will provide all public and state-owned schools with free A3 licenses for core Microsoft software such as Microsoft 365, Minecraft: Education Edition, and Windows 10 and later.
Microsoft Teams, OneNote, Forms, and other apps allow teachers to create a collaborative hybrid classroom that allows learners to work together and access resources, and teachers to quickly assess their learning and provide personalized feedback.
Additionally, schools that have already adopted cloud security and protection technologies can apply for fully funded A5 licenses that offer more intensive security management and advanced compliance across all school-owned devices, with additional analysis tools (via Power BI).
A5 licenses include Microsoft Defender for Endpoint, a cloud-based solution designed to help school networks prevent, detect, investigate, and respond to advanced threats.
The renewed Microsoft Schools Agreement is effective January 1, 2022, until December 31, 2024. However, Defender for Endpoint security features are now available to qualifying schools.
Microsoft is also working with the ministry to provide free security training and certifications to its technology partners, to help schools deploy improved cybersecurity faster.
“Throughout our long relationship with the Ministry of Education, we have worked together to identify the issues most important to schools and teachers and provide the tools they need to deliver the best educational outcomes,” says Lydia Kronawetter, Head of Education Industry at Microsoft. New Zealand.
“With today’s e-learning and blended learning models, safety is a top priority,” she says.
“It is essential to ensure not only that digital education is useful and engaging, but that school data is protected and that education continues to take place in a safe and secure environment. “
Dedicated online sessions are planned to update school administrators and IT managers, as well as sessions for IT service providers and school integrators. These sessions will focus on the details of the new agreement, with the opportunity to ask questions and find out what support is being provided.
IT service providers are invited to attend the first free webinar on October 1.
Emma Barrett, Public Sector Director at Microsoft New Zealand, said she was excited to renew Microsoft’s relationship with the Ministry of Education and empower schools to provide safe and reliable online learning.
“This agreement paves the way for every state and state-integrated school nationwide to experience world-class enterprise-level security on every device,” Barrett said.
“As more schools and kura across Aotearoa adopt secure cloud platforms and new technologies such as cloud telephony over the next few years, this will give educators even more confidence to innovate in the field. ‘digital space,’ she says.
“This is great news for teachers, for students and for the future of New Zealand.”