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G Suite for Education and O365 Glow Update

Following our announcement back in April about Google and Microsoft products in Glow, now is a good time to share more information on what this means.

From 2018, for the first time G Suite for Education will be joining Glow. The provision of Microsoft O365 will also continue. Both will be available for at least the next 5.5 years.

This introduces an element of choice, where Glow users can access products from either Microsoft or Google or a blend of both dependent on their needs. Access to G Suite requires a local authority and other Glow customers to opt-in before it can be rolled out to their users.

Key Features

G Suite for Education

  • Google Classroom – an online space to share class content, organise assignments and provide feedback on learners’ work. By using the announcements feature teachers can quickly distribute information to a class and allow learners to respond. This feature allows you to share a message with the whole class easily and quickly.. Classroom is accessible on a web browser and using mobile apps to support learning both in and outside of school.
  • Google Drive – storage for every user to store and share a range of multimedia content online. This also integrates with Google Classroom to provide an easy to follow digital workflow.
  • Google Docs –create and edit Docs, Sheets and Slides. Learners and teachers can work together in real time across the class, school, local authority and beyond. Using the ‘Explore’ feature learners can get dynamic layout suggestions for their presentations and recommended images to insert, all approved for use with Creative Commons. In Sheets ‘explore’ can be used to help summarise spreadsheet data with automated charts and insights.
  • Google Forms – create a poll or quiz to assess learning, manage event registrations or communicate with parents using a range of question options. Add images or videos easily and share this so it can be completed on a range of devices. Organise and analyse your responses using real time information and charts.
  • Google Hangouts – School staff can connect with each other through text and video chat across devices, desktop, laptop, tablet, phone. (N.B. This will not be available to students).

Microsoft O365

  • Class Teams –an online space for class conversations, Class Notebooks and Assignments. Each Class Team has 25TB of file storage, a shared calendar, video conferencing and can have its own website and video content.
  • School Data Sync – automatic generation of Class Teams from school SEEMiS data to take the admin out of setting up and maintaining spaces for classrooms.
  • Class Notebook –a connected set of online private digital jotters for each pupil in a class, typically with pages for class work and homework, visible to and controlled by the teacher. Each Class Notebook also has a read-only Content Library for reference material and a Collaboration Space where pupils can work together.
  • Glow Yammer – a closed social media environment where Glow users can engage in online discussions via browser or mobile app and work in groups on topics important to them in school or across Scotland.
  • Forms – create online surveys, polls and self-marking quizzes with rich media content and scope for individual feedback. Forms can be shared within the Glow environment and with parents and other non-Glow users. Each Form has an automatic visual presentation of results updated in real time.
  • OneDrive for Business – unlimited cloud storage for teachers and learners offering the ability to share files with other Glow users and with parents and other non-Glow users.
  • SharePoint – share, organise and manage content through files, websites, apps, calendars, workflows and automatically managed groups of users.
  • Sway – create mobile friendly multimedia presentations that can be shared within the Glow environment and with parents and other non-Glow users.
  • Office online – online versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote, enabling users to create documents and collaborate in real-time.
  • Full free download of the Office suite including Word/Excel/PowerPoint/Access/Outlook/Skype for Business available on up to 15 personal devices for all Glow users.

What’s Next?


A pilot phase is running until December which will be used to assist in a national roll-out. From early 2018 local authorities can opt-in to add G suite to Glow. Further updates on the introduction of G Suite and the opt-in process for local authorities will be shared on Glow Connect early 2018.


O365 users can continue to use the tools and services they have been enjoying over the past few years. Users will benefit from on-going evolution of the service through updates and new functionality.

We look forward to sharing more details on the outcome of this pilot and rollout of G Suite for Education soon.

Glow Authentication And Portal Services Contract And New Features Update

Back in June we announced that RM Education Ltd had been selected by Education Scotland to continue to deliver Glow Authentication and Portal Services. The new contract will commence in January 2018 for 5.5 years with opportunities to extend up to a maximum of 10.5 years. The full cost (£1.3 million per annum) will be met by Education Scotland and Scottish Government.

This means Glow Users will be able to continue to use the services, free of charge and in full confidence of the stability and continuity of provision.

As part of this new contract we are pleased to announce a range of new features, helping to improve the Glow platform.


  • Notifications – all users can be kept up to date with information relevant to them, right on their Launch Pad.
  • Continuity – the service remains the same for 5.5 years, with possible extensions up to 10.5 years. This guarantees availability and continuity for at least that period. Teachers work plans won’t be negatively affected by changes in the service and learners and teachers will continue to have access to the tools Glow offers and to their work and documents stored online.
  • Age appropriate sign-in – helping users get easier access by reducing difficult and complicated passwords. This will make it easier for learners to log in quickly and save teachers time from helping users who have forgotten their password.
  • Self-service Identity-matching – Glow users who are not provisioned via SEEMiS can keep access to their Glow account more easily than before when moving establishment. This is positive for student teachers as they will be able to carry over their accounts once they graduate.
  • Security Improvements – behind the scenes, a number of security improvements are being made, including an enhanced account lock-out policy based on a number of failed login attempts, an audit record for failed and successful logins and improved reporting tools. Increased security brings increased confidence for users.

These new features will all join Glow in the future. Alongwith the recent addition of Microsoft Teams; external sharing; the announcement of continued support from Microsoft; and the addition of G Suite, this all adds up to a very exciting time for Glow.