Over a year ago we began working with the UK Department of Education on their mission to make it easier for schools that are moving to the cloud to understand the issues of data security and protection and ensure that their service providers meet certain standards. We wanted to be involved to help schools more easily find answers to their questions, and know which questions to ask in the first place. This effort resulted in the UK Department of Education's Cloud Service Providers checklist, and we’re delighted to be a part of it.

This Cloud Services Checklist covers important legal requirements including data processing, data confidentiality and integrity, service availability and much more to help ensure that schools are fully aware of their legal obligations. Guy Shearer, the Head of IT and Data at the David Ross Education Trust says: "This very welcomed Department for Education checklist goes some way to putting informed guidance out there, in particular in giving schools a solid sense of the kinds of questions they should ask before choosing a cloud service. Google's response clearly sets out how they comply."

Google Apps for Education is actively used by more than 40 million students worldwide, so we’re very committed to enabling teachers and students to integrate technology into their classrooms through simple-to-use, cloud-based tools. Our responses— thoroughly reviewed by the Department of Education—can be accessed in full here.

We also know how important it is that schools have absolute confidence in the security of their data, which is why we’re so happy to participate in this important effort. Educators around the world should know how their student data is treated by cloud providers. Transparency is key to providing schools the information they need to make the best choices about their students’ education and to feel confident that they are being good stewards. We’re thrilled to be able to partner with the UK Department of Education, and others around the world, by putting tools into the hands of students and teachers that make teaching and learning exciting and fun, and safe.