Freeport School District is moving to Google Apps!
We’re pleased to announce that Freeport School District has chosen Google Apps for its new email, calendar, and contacts platform. Our IT team has been working on the migration and is looking forward to moving employees from Microsoft Outlook to the new services. You will need to start using the new email and calendar services effective August 1, 2016.
What’s Google Apps?
Google Apps is a suite of web-based messaging and collaboration applications that Google hosts on its own servers. Google provides these applications as a service, rather than as software to download and install. To access Google Apps, you simply use a web browser on a computer that's connected to the Internet or your smart device.
For a quick overview of Google Apps and why we’re so excited about the switch, check out this video!
Why did we choose Google Apps?
We looked for a solution that could provide with us the following benefits:
● Lower infrastructure costs — Our email will be stored securely on Google's servers, so we'll no longer need to maintain email servers on-site
● Ability to consolidate our platforms — We can eliminate redundancy by moving all of our email and calendar platforms to Google Apps
● Lower support costs — Because Google hosts the email and calendar services, there's no more email client software to maintain on individual computers
● Innovative solutions — We can leverage the ongoing creative and technical solutions of the Google Apps platform to provide employees with powerful, easy-to-use tools for getting their work done
● Highly scalable environment — With Google Apps, our email capacity will grow automatically as Freeport School District grows, and we'll avoid the complexity of internal systems
● Access to services from anywhere, anytime — A key benefit of the Google-hosted solution is that we can access email, contacts, and calendar from any computer or mobile device with an Internet connection, anywhere in the world
● More collaboration features — With Google's next-generation applications, we can collaborate with colleagues, customers, and partners more easily and efficiently than ever before
Here are some of the key benefits we think you'll enjoy:
● Lots of storage: You get an unlimited amount of online storage for your email, so you can archive all of your email online. You'll no longer need to worry about deleting messages or saving them in offline folders.
● Enhanced message organization and retrieval: With Gmail, you'll spend less time managing folders and looking for messages. Use tags, or "labels," to organize, store, and find your messages more efficiently. And with the Google-powered search feature, you can find any message quickly and easily, whether it's in your Inbox or stored in your message archives.
● Easier calendar sharing: Google Calendar lets you and your team members quickly and easily share your calendars with each other and specify the details you want to show. Calendar sharing is a great way for you and your coworkers to keep each other informed about your schedules. Now it's easier than ever to find out if someone is in a meeting, on a business trip, or on vacation.
Is Google Apps the same as the personal (free) version of Gmail and Google Calendar?
They’re similar, but we'll be using the business-class edition of Google Apps, which provides more features, more storage, and more support.
Will my email address change?
No, your email address won't change! You'll continue to receive all your email at your current fsd145.org address.
Are you migrating my email and calendar to Google Apps?
Yes, we'll migrate your existing email messages, calendar events, and personal contacts from Microsoft Outlook to Google Apps during non-business hours. We will migrate email received from July 1, 2015 through July 31, 2016. We will migrate your calendar events that were scheduled for July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2017. We will migrate contacts from your personal contacts list in Outlook to Google Contacts. The migration of email messages, calendar events and contacts from Outlook to Google will begin on August 1, 2016 and will be completed by August 31, 2016.
Will I be able to access my old email and calendar?
Yes, you will be able to access your old email and calendar by logging into Outlook Web Access. This link will remain active for the 2016 – 2017 school year.
Do I need to do anything after I get my Google Apps account?
You'll just need to complete a few simple tasks to complete your migration, such as re-creating any email rules you used in Microsoft Outlook as Gmail filters, and setting up your mobile device to access your services from anywhere.
Will the IT department provide assistance during the transition?
Members of the IT team will also be available to answer your questions or resolve any issues you encounter. You can also visit the Google Apps Learning Center for guides, tips and examples of how to make the most of your new services.
How much time will it take to set up and learn how to use Google Apps?
You'll be able to master the basics, like sending and receiving email and viewing and scheduling meetings, very quickly. It may take more time to really learn to make the most of your new services, depending on how you currently use Microsoft Outlook. For example, for a typical email and calendar migration, expect to spend a few hours over the course of a week or so to review the online training, review documentation, and set up your services. If you also access email on a mobile device, plan on spending a bit more time.
We think you'll enjoy your new Google Apps services, and we're committed to making this a smooth transition.