Google jumps into the classroom with Chromebooks

Google is going back to school via new Chromebooks as they make their way into select schools in time for the new year.

Google has proven its commitment to promoting education at every grade level, whether it be hosting an international science fair or National Geographic's geography bee.

Here's another way that Google is getting more involved in schools: Chromebooks.

Google boasts on its official enterprise blog the following reasons as to why Chromebooks are preferable to other computers in the classroom:

  • Decrease wait times with a faster boot-up time (as quick as eight seconds)
  • Protect against viruses with enhanced security
  • Regular software updates from Google, lowering maintenance and other software upgrade costs

So far, at least a handful of schools are showing interest in these features and functions. Here's a snapshot of the three schools that Google has highlighted and how they will utilize Chromebooks for their education plans:

  • Merton Community School District, Merton, Wis. (6th grade): 110 sixth graders will each receive a Chromebook to keep and use until they finish 8th grade. The goal is to "increase critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity among students." Educators also want to steer students away from using cell phones for research purposes because of network security reasons.
  • Grace Lutheran School, Oshkosh, Wis. (7th & 8th grades): 17 Chromebooks will be shared among 5th through 8th grade students. Chromebooks were seen as the economical choice, and students can use them to do peer reviews in real-time on Google Docs. Google Maps and Earth can be used for real-world math problems.
  • The Fessenden School, West Newton, Mass. (K-9): The school has bought "two carts full" of Chromebooks that teachers can reserve using Google Calendar for their lessons. Students can also students can rent a Chromebook from the school library, and the eventual goal is to entrust all students in 5th through 9th grades with their own Chromebooks.

For educators and businesses interested in Chromebooks, visit Google's Chrome Sales page.

In another effort to promote Chromebooks, Google partnered with Virgin America once again. Those laptops are available for rent on select flights across the country.