School Passport Offered Free To GG4L Members Worldwide

GG4L Announces Availability of School Passport, an Enterprise-Grade Single Sign-On and Identity Management Platform, Sponsored Free to all Members

Today the Global Grid for Learning (GG4L), a Public Benefit Corporation, announced that it plans to release School Passport as a free add-on to GG4L Connect. GG4L Connect is an open standards based school data governance, integration and interoperability platform that is specifically designed for educational institutions. GG4L leverages corporate sponsorships and philanthropic funding programs to offer a free membership based program and associated benefits, including unlimited access to GG4L Connect, to any school globally.

School Passport helps school districts securely and cost-effectively distribute third-party EdTech applications and content to students and staff using an enterprise-grade, standards-based Single Sign-On (SSO), Identity Management (IDM) and Identity Federation services. Schools choose from hundreds of applications listed in the GG4L Catalyst Catalog. School Passport seamlessly works with any school’s or district’s LMS, SIS, third-party applications and devices. 

The cost of School Passport is subsidized through Corporate Sponsorships. Working together, sponsors, districts, application vendors and GG4L bring the power and security of world-class, standards-based SSO and IDM to school students and staff worldwide. 

All EdTech Vendors are welcome to publish their applications and content in the GG4L Catalyst Catalog at no cost. GG4L membership is encouraged but not required to be listed in the catalog.  School Passport integrates with both Microsoft Office 365 and Google G-Suite in addition to hundreds of third-party applications and connectors.

Corporate sponsorships are available through GG4L, with an average sponsorship cost of $1,000 per school site per year for support of an unlimited number of applications within School Passport. GG4L welcomes schools and districts to bring their own sponsors. While it continues to recruit corporate sponsors, GG4L will sustain the free cost of the service to its current 7,500 on-boarded school members, and all new on-boarded members before December 31, 2019.

“We are very eager to deliver on our mission as a B-Corp through various innovative technological offerings combined with sustainable business models and impact initiatives that are purpose-built for schools,” said Robert Iskander, Founder and CEO of GG4L. “Our goal is to lower the schools’ IT management overhead, subsidize recurring software licensing costs, and eliminate the data interoperability taxes incurred by schools and their EdTech vendors through new and disruptive business models!”

School Passport will be released by August 1, 2019. Schools and school districts are encouraged to apply for a free GG4L Membership through the GG4L website (www.GG4L.com/pledge-now/).

Future-Proof Skills for School Learners Globally

GG4L’s Future-Proof Skills Impact Initiative Fosters a Purpose-Built Career-Ready STEAM Ecosystem for K-12 Schools

Today the Global Grid for Learning (GG4L), a Public Benefit Corporation, announced a new strategic impact initiative, called Future-Proof Skills, centered around STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) and business education along with career-ready skills mastery, validation and inventory for schools worldwide.

This is GG4L’s second strategic impact initiative to-date, building on top of its first foundational initiative, Safer Schools in America that was launched in partnership with McREL International in November 2018 as a $25M research grant program.

“We all want our children to succeed at life, learning, and career. Future-Proof Skills will help each school individually and uniquely bridge the gap between the knowledge and skills it currently teaches, with those that are identified locally and globally as needed for success, including  those that are just emerging and those that we have not even dreamed of yet.” said Dr. Sandra Elliott, GG4L’s Chief Academic Officer. “We believe this requires a data-informed framework that connects the ecosystem of  learners, educators, employers, social systems, and technology solutions, enabling individuals to find the best match for their knowledge, skills, and abilities and the needs of the workforce and society.”

GG4L’s Future-Proof Skills Impact initiative will focus on purposefully attracting a unique ecosystem of innovative EdTech vendors, content publishers, corporate sponsors, education foundations and research organizations, all focusing on STEAM and Business Skills, pathways to higher education and specialized careers, and solving the anticipated future shortage in various skill sets required by hundreds of career choices, many of which are yet to be identified.

Similar to the Safer Schools Impact initiative, Future-Proof Skills aims to create a validated framework for a continuous improvement process that could be adopted by any school. Future-Proof Skills will insure that schools are preparing a future workforce that is ready to tackle new and emerging opportunities in various new fields such as Artificial Intelligence, Data Science, Robotics, and Cybersecurity.

GG4L’s core technology supporting this impact initiative is composed of an integration platform, called GG4L Connect, used by thousands of schools across the world, and a data analytics and visualization tool called GG4L Compass, that is being tested in various US school districts and expected to be officially released and announced in a few weeks. 

To support its Future-Proof Skills program activities, such as grants, contests, internships, and scholarships, GG4L is now soliciting corporate sponsors, research partners, and EdTech vendors to join its Future-Proof Skills ecosystem. Click here for more information and to apply for membership,

IMS Global Learning Consortium Standards And Initiatives Fuel GG4L’s Impressive First Year Growth

Over 300 Organizations Serving 100,000+ K-12 Schools Globally Joined the GG4L Collaborative to Support Its Sustainable Impact Initiatives

SAN DIEGO, May 20, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — As a Contributing Member of IMS Global Learning Consortium, and a proud Gold Sponsor of the Learning Impact Leadership Institute kicking off here today in San Diego, the Global Grid for Learning (GG4L) is pleased to announce its impressive growth since its launch less than a year ago, as a result of its adoption of the various IMS Global industry standards and strategic initiatives. GG4L Connect™, a hybrid-cloud data interoperability and governance platform, recently achieved IMS certification for IMS OneRoster® 1.1. 

“IMS Global OneRoster, Learning Tools Interoperability® (LTI®), Caliper Analytics®, Comprehensive Learner Records (CLR) and Competencies and Academic Standards Exchange® (CASE®) are all essential standards that the whole EdTech ecosystem must leverage to create a secure and reliable infrastructure for data interoperability across the whole spectrum of educational technology solutions,” commented Robert Iskander, Founder & CEO of GG4L. “We plan to adopt all of these standards in our journey to drive sustainable impact initiatives in education.”

“The IMS Global conformance certification program ensures that educational institutions can be confident that their integrations are secure and fully interoperable with other certified products,” said Dr. Rob Abel, chief executive officer, IMS Global Learning Consortium. “Congratulations to Global Grid for Learning for joining in the growing IMS ecosystem by certifying the latest version of OneRoster!”

GG4L is a membership-based collaborative, that is free of charge to all education institutions and government agencies, and available for a modest annual membership fee to any EdTech organization. GG4L leverages its Platform to create an integrated ecosystem of EdTech solutions that could be easily implemented, validated and sustained financially for schools around the world, as they together drive school improvement. To date, over 300 organizations, serving over 100,000 schools globally, have joined as GG4L Members and agreed to GG4L’s membership pledge (https://gg4l.com/pledge-now/) to advocate for open data interoperability standards, secure data exchange and strict student data privacy compliance.

The “Safer Schools in America” Research Grant, launched in November 2018, is GG4L’s first impact initiative aimed to address the need for safer schools. The grant program provides support to selected schools for the implementation and usage of select EdTech products from leading education providers who are focused on school safety solutions for K-12. These solutions will be implemented and studied for a period of 3 years – at no cost to the school grant recipients. GG4L has awarded $9M in grants to 72 schools from 36 school districts, geographically distributed across 16 States, who will start the new school year with EdTech tools in place to help them protect their students by creating a secure grid in and around schools’ academic, social, and physical environments. For a full list of participating EdTech members, corporate sponsors and the Grant Application, please refer to: https://gg4l.com/initiatives/safer-schools/

GG4L Awards EdTech Grants to 72 US Schools Across 16 States

Safer Schools in America, a 3-year national research effort studying the impact of EdTech innovation on school safety, will launch in the new school year

May 15, 2019 | Bay Area, California – Global Grid for Learning (GG4L) is pleased to announce that 72 schools from 36 school districts, geographically distributed across 16 States, who were selected for grants during phase one of the ‘Safer Schools in America Impact Grant’ initiative, will start the new school year with edtech tools in place to help them protect their students by creating a secure grid in and around schools’ academic, social, and physical environments.

In November 2018, in partnership with McRel International, GG4L announced the Safer Schools in America Impact Grant.  The grant program provides support to selected schools for the implementation and usage of select EdTech products from leading education providers who are focused on school safety solutions for K-12. These solutions will be implemented and studied for a period of 3 years – at no cost to the school grant recipients.

“How we provide a safer environment for teaching and learning is always top of mind for educators,” said Dr. Sandra Elliott, GG4L Chief Academic Officer. “We are grateful for their commitment in helping us measure the impact of 40+ new and innovative edtech solutions.”

In line with ESSA requirements, the Safer Schools in America impact initiative will use independent measures of efficacy under an institutional quality research framework to establish best practices that can be shared nationally. The data will be aggregated, anonymized and analyzed by McREL and GG4L and provided in quarterly and annual reports to all stakeholders.

Additional edtech grants will be awarded to more than 200 school districts during Phase II and III. The application deadline for Phase II has been extended to May 31 to allow for last minute requests. U.S. schools and districts are encouraged to apply soon .

The application takes less than 10 minutes to complete and can be found at: https://gg4l.com/impact-initiative-grant-application/.

For more information about the Safer Schools in America Grant Initiative and a list of participating edtech vendors, please visit: https://gg4l.com/initiatives/safer-schools/.

Global Grid for Learning is continuing to make edtech easier to deploy, more effective for teachers and students, and more affordable for districts and vendors. Our next initiative, Future-Proofing Our Schools, available to member schools worldwide, will be announced later in 2019.

About GG4L

Global Grid for Learning (GG4L) is committed to promoting data security in schools. Protecting the data of every user is a top priority. GG4L’s Connect platform makes integrating and deploying education technology safe, easy, and inexpensive. It’s free for schools to use, less expensive for EdTech vendors, and safer for students. As a Public Benefit Corporation, GG4L welcomes collaboration and support from corporate social responsibility (CSR) and philanthropic foundations. Help us keep K-12 data interoperability costs low for schools, while maintaining the security and privacy of student data. Contact us today to learn more about becoming a GG4L Corporate Sponsor at info@gg4l.com

About MCREL

A nonprofit research and development organization that since 1966 has turned knowledge about what works in education into practical, effective guidance and training for teachers and education leaders across the U.S. and around the world. McREL provides schools, districts, and other education organizations with high-quality research and evaluation, professional development and coaching, strategic planning, and assistance with improvement and innovation projects.

GG4L Safer Schools Initiative Update

safer schools initiative updateIn November 2018, in partnership with McRel International, Global Grid for Learning announced the launch of our first initiative, the Safer Schools in America Impact Grant.  The grant program provides support to selected schools for the implementation and usage of select EdTech products from leading education providers who are focused on school safety solutions for K-12. These solutions will be implemented and studied for a period of 3 years – at no cost to the school grant recipients.

Since announcing the launch in November 2018, we are pleased to report on the progress of our efforts.

Phase I Complete

Phase I of the initiative is now well underway, and we are pleased to announce that 85 schools in 15 states have been awarded grants. Read the full release here.

Phase II Launch

Additional grants will be awarded to more than 400 US schools in more than 200 school districts during Phase II. Applications for Phase II are available through April 30th. U.S. schools are encouraged to apply soon.

EdTech Vendor Partnerships 

From our initial EdTech partnerships with Amazon AWS, LightSpeed Systems, and Instructure, we have continued to grow our EdTech network. Our partnerships with EdTech vendors continue to grow, with new vendors being added each week. Learn more about our EdTech partners.

Safer Schools Resource Page

For the benefit of all schools, vendors, and corporate partners, we are developing a comprehensive list of Safe Schools Resources. If you know of an organization, publication, or institution that should be included, please let us know.

What’s Next?

Global Grid for Learning is continuing to make edtech easier to deploy, more effective for teachers and students, and more affordable for districts and vendors. Our next initiative, the Future-Proofing Learning with STEAM Credentials, available to member schools worldwide, will be announced later in 2019.

Join Us

Schools around the globe can join GG4L free for life. Learn more.

EdTech Vendors can join GG4L for a small membership fee that delivers enormous benefits. Learn more.

Businesses help us make a sustainable impact by becoming a sponsor. No matter what size your business is, from a small mom-and-pop retailer to a Fortune 100 global corporation, GG4L Catalyst will match you with an impact opportunity at any level: global, national, regional, or local. Learn more.

GG4L Announces $9M in Phase I Grants

GG4L Announces $9M in Phase 1 Grants

54 School Districts Awarded $9M in Phase I of GG4L’s Safer Schools in America Impact Grant Program

Safer Schools In America Grant Distributions Phase IFebruary 14, 2019 | Bay Area, California  Global Grid for Learning (GG4L) is pleased to announce an estimated $9 million in EdTech grants have been awarded to 85 schools from 54 US school districts across 15 states in Phase I of the Safer Schools in America Impact Grant Program.

Additional grants will be awarded to 400+ US schools across more than 200 school districts in Phase II, which is open for applications until April 30th. Safer Schools in America is jointly operated by GG4L and McREL, a Tier 1 educational research institute, and will run through 2022.  

The Safer Schools in America Impact Grant Program will support the implementation and usage of select EdTech products from leading education providers who are focused on school safety solutions for K-12. These solutions will be implemented and studied for a period of 3 years at no cost to the school grant recipients. The grants will also address an industry wide need to capture data-driven validation research around a significant range of activities believed to foster safer teaching and learning environments. These include emotional, physical and digital safety as well as emergency preparedness, school facilities, culture, and community engagement.

“Montgomery Public Schools has become involved with the Global Grid for Learning (GG4L) on multiple initiatives that are aimed toward school improvement,” commented Dr. Ann R. Moore, Superintendent of Montgomery Public Schools, Alabama. “We are so grateful that GG4L has brought together solution providers and the funding to accomplish these important goals. School safety is our number one priority. Every parent must know his or her child is safe. Our children flourish in learning environments that are not only welcoming but secure. The teaming of GG4L and our staff should be a comfort to our employees and our parents. To my knowledge, this partnership is a first of its kind to fill this critical need in America’s public education system.”

“We want to thank all of the school districts who submitted their applications,” said Dr. Sandra Elliott, GG4L Chief Academic Officer. “We were truly impressed with the quality and quantity of these applications that validate the need for a comprehensive data-driven framework for school safety, along with an integrated suite of validated, innovative EdTech solutions. So far, we have over 25 EdTech vendors partnering with us in this program, with more expected to join us over the next 90 days. We are proud to have Amazon AWS, LightSpeed Systems, and Instructure as our initial Sponsors. We are looking forward to welcoming Fortune 500 companies participate as Corporate Sponsors.”  

For a full list of participating EdTech Members, Corporate Sponsors and the Phase II Grant Application, please refer to: https://gg4l.com/initiatives/safer-schools/

About Global Grid for Learning (GG4L) – A Public Benefit Corporation seeking to democratize access to and sustained implementations of digital learning solutions for K12 schools. GG4L’s  platform as a service solution, which helps manage critical data co-dependencies between schools and digital learning providers, is offered at no-cost-to-schools as a platform that is combined with a set of impact initiatives. GG4L is supported by a unique membership-based corporate, philanthropic and community-based funding model. For more information please visit us at www.gg4l.com or contact us at info@gg4l.com.

About McREL International – A nonprofit research and development organization that since 1966 has turned knowledge about what works in education into practical, effective guidance and training for teachers and education leaders across the U.S. and around the world. McREL provides schools, districts, and other education organizations with high-quality research and evaluation, professional development and coaching, strategic planning, and assistance with improvement and innovation projects.

GG4L Media contact:
Mark Middendorp, VP Marketing
markm@gg4l.com
815.980.6026

Lightspeed Systems Sponsors Groundbreaking Research Into School Safety

The leading edtech company partners with Global Grid for Learning and McREL International, sponsoring research into school safety solutions and providing software grants to participating schools.

AUSTIN, TX. — Today, Lightspeed Systems made another critical step toward school safety by announcing its sponsorship of the Safer Schools in America Impact Grant Program, an initiative jointly operated by Global Grid for Learning and the Tier 1 educational research institute McREL International. Through the program, eligible schools will receive $25 million of grants in education technology products and services — from Lightspeed Systems and other corporate sponsors — for the purpose of protecting students against school violence and self-harm.

As a provider of K-12 filtering, mobile device management and monitoring solutions for 20 years, Lightspeed Systems has helped tens of thousands of school customers intervene to prevent student harm, saving countless lives. By participating in Safer Schools in America, Lightspeed will not only grant essential software solutions to participating schools — creating a safer, more easily managed learning experience for students — the company will also contribute meaningfully to research supporting school safety.

Safer Schools in America will study the impact of sponsor products and services across 500 American schools in 250 school districts over the next three years. The results of this groundbreaking national research study will be published quarterly, starting in spring 2019.

“Lightspeed Systems is a major player in edtech with more than 28,000 school customers and a key partner in our expanding ecosystem; we are very pleased to count them as a sponsor of Safer Schools in America and hope that their commitment paves the way for other corporate sponsors,” said GG4L Founder and CEO Robert Iskander.

“We are proud to be a sponsor of this strategic initiative toward the improved safety of our schools and the lives of children,” said Lightspeed Systems President & CEO Brian Thomas. “By teaming up with GG4L and other corporations, we can help even more schools and save even more lives.”

To learn more about Lightspeed Systems, visit https://www.lightspeedsystems.com. To learn more about GG4L’s Safer Schools in America Impact Grant, visit https://gg4l.com/initiatives/safer-schools.

About Lightspeed Systems

Lightspeed Systems partners with schools to make learning safe, mobile and easily managed. Partnered with 6,500 districts in the United States and more than 28,000 schools around the world, Lightspeed Systems offers integrated solutions for smarter K-12 school networks: Relay, Relay Classroom, Mobile Manager, and Web Filter. To learn more, visit http://www.lightspeedsystems.com.

About Global Grid for Learning (GG4L)

Embracing the belief that a nation’s education system directly impacts its future, GG4L is building innovative public and private partnerships mindfully structured to harness the power of data to solve big school challenges such as school safety, literacy, college and career readiness. With privacy and security top of mind, GG4L’s 3-way partnership, among schools, industry and philanthropy, actively champions continuous cycles of improvement informed by data. By facilitating affordable access to proven solutions and efficacy data, GG4L fuels rapid innovation in education. As a membership-based Public Benefit Corporation, GG4L is committed to voluntarily meeting higher standards of corporate purpose, accountability and transparency. To learn more, visit http://www.GG4L.com.

About McREL International

McREL International is a nonprofit research and development organization that since 1966 has turned knowledge about what works in education into practical, effective guidance and training for teachers and education leaders across the U.S. and around the world. Using a collaborative approach and research-based insights, McREL provides schools, districts, and other education organizations with high-quality research and evaluation, professional development and coaching, strategic planning, and assistance with improvement and innovation projects.  To learn more, visit http://www.mcrel.org.

T|H|E Journal Highlights Safer Schools in America Grant

The education technology publication T|H|E Journal reported on the Safer Schools in America Impact Grant to disburse $25 million worth of safety solutions to as many as 500 schools, and then study the effectiveness of the technologies deployed. The participating vendors focus on a wide variety of safety-related issues, from emotional well-being to managing sports injuries to keeping in touch with parents. “Parents, students, teachers and administrators expect schools to be safe, secure, and supportive for teaching and learning, but little research has been done to date to measure the effectiveness of the solutions that we purchase to address safety and well-being,” said Sandra Elliott, chief academic officer at Global Grid, in a statement.

Read the full article.

GG4L AND McREL LAUNCH “SAFER SCHOOLS IN AMERICA” $25M IMPACT GRANT

November 27, 2018 ​| Bay Area, CA, Global Grid for Learning (GG4L) and McREL International are pleased to announce the open application period for the Safer Schools in America Impact Grant with a total in-kind value of over $25 Million over three years.

Starting today, GG4L Member US districts may nominate up to three schools each to qualify for grants that fund several pre-integrated innovative solutions from over 25 global EdTech providers to be deployed and measured at no cost to the schools for a minimum of three years each. Any US school or school district could be a GG4L member at no cost and apply for the Grant Application. 100 US schools will be selected for the initial phase of the Grant by January 30, 2019, with 400 additional schools to be selected in later phases in 2019.  

Aligned to the US national ESSA-Title IV Part A, Student Support and Academic Enrichment (SSAE) framework for school safety, the Safer Schools in America Impact Grant will capture data-driven validation research around the expansive range of activities needed to foster safer school environments, including emotional, physical and digital safety, emergency preparedness, school facilities, culture, and community engagement.

“Parents, students, teachers and administrators expect schools to be safe, secure, and supportive for teaching and learning, but little research has been done to date to measure the effectiveness of the solutions that we purchase to address safety and well-being” explains Dr. Sandra Elliott, Chief Academic Officer at GG4L. Bryan Goodwin, CEO of McREL comments, “We hope that by joining this partnership, McREL can contribute to building a better evidence base that helps educators and parents make informed decisions about which approaches will work best for their students and schools.”

This Impact Grant is made possible through generous sponsorships from corporations and philanthropy.  For more information on the list of sponsors and participating GG4L Members please visit our website at https://gg4l.com/impact/safer-schools/


About Global Grid for Learning (GG4L) – Embracing the belief that our nation’s education system impacts our future, GG4L is building innovative public and private partnerships mindfully structured to harness the power of data to solve big school challenges such as school safety, literacy, college and career readiness and student wellness. With privacy and security top of mind, GG4L’s 3-way partnership between schools, industry and philanthropy, actively champions continuous cycles of improvement informed by data. By facilitating affordable access to proven solutions and efficacy data, GG4L fuels rapid innovation in education. As a membership-based Public Benefit Corporation, GG4L is committed to voluntarily meeting higher standards of corporate purpose, accountability and transparency.

About McREL International – A nonprofit research and development organization that since 1966 has turned knowledge about what works in education into practical, effective guidance and training for teachers and education leaders across the U.S. and around the world. McREL provides schools, districts, and other education organizations with high-quality research and evaluation, professional development and coaching, strategic planning, and assistance with improvement and innovation projects.

For more information please visit us at www.gg4l.com or contact us at saferschools@gg4l.com

Protecting Student Data Privacy – Everyone Plays a Role

Current legislation does not take into consideration the high-tech revolution that has occurred in EdTech. As beneficial as innovations like internet access, affordable devices, and e-learning tools can be for students, protecting the private information that schools possess can be challenging. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) does protect families and their children to some extent; however, student data is often required to effectively provision cloud-hosted EdTech solutions.

Parents as Advocates

While there are certain bits of student data, such as directory information, that do not require a consent form to be shared by third-party vendors, parents do have the right to know what information is being used and why. A child’s education record can hold everything from their date of birth and home address to physical descriptors and school activities. When schools are managing multiple EdTech vendors, parents must have the ability to play a key advocacy role in ensuring privacy and data protection.

Schools as Trustees

It’s not uncommon for schools to contract with 25 or more different EdTech vendors, many requiring access to student information. Schools must develop and enforce strict data protection policies with their EdTech vendors as well as require an option for parents to opt-out of providing identifying information. Many programs, despite being school-related, do not fall under FERPA and are not automatically guaranteed the same data protections, so schools are forced to provide the additional necessary data security.

EdTech Community Working Together

Protecting student data is everyone’s responsibility, from the schools who store the data to the EdTech vendors who access it, to the corporations who demand highly-qualified candidates and drive the need for EdTech, to the communities that benefit from a well-educated population. Proper oversight is pivotal in the protection of sensitive student data, which has become more important as technology advances. Mobile portals and other third-party EdTech services are convenient, but they can pose a considerable privacy risk. We can all do more to help protect data.


Global Grid for Learning (GG4L) is committed to promoting data security in schools, and protecting the data of every user is a top priority. GG4L’s Connect platform makes integrating and deploying education technology safe, easy, and inexpensive. It’s free for schools to use, less expensive for EdTech vendors, and safer for students. As a Public Benefit Corporation, GG4L welcomes collaboration and support from corporate social responsibility (CSR) and philanthropic foundations. Help us keep K-12 data interoperability costs low for schools, while maintaining the security and privacy of student data.  Contact us today to learn more about becoming a GG4L Corporate Sponsor.