Microsoft’s search engine, Bing, has plans to expand control for school district IT administrators. Later this year a new service, Bing for Schools, will allow a custom tailored experience for education institutions. The new service will allow opt-ins without the need of any special software or a different search address.
IT administrators can take control of a collection of new features inducing the ability to remove ads from search results, default filtering to “strict” while locking out a student’s ability to change it, and a customized Bing homepage that integrate a common core curriculum.
Microsoft's Bing behavioral scientist, Matt Wallaert, outlines the program’s abilities in a press release:
Keeping Our Kids Focused on Learning:As a country, we’ve set schools aside as a special place that is focused on learning, and have traditionally kept advertising out of that environment. Bing For Schools removes ads from the search experience, keeping with our strong belief that schools are for learning and not selling.
Protecting Our Kids:Bing already offers the ability to filter out adult content with SafeSearch, but with Bing For Schools, SafeSearch will automatically default to the strict setting and remove kids ability to change it.
Educating Our Kids: In addition to the beautiful Bing homepage images, which feature hotspots that encourage exploration of new and unexpected topics, Bing For Schools will offer short lesson plans that teach digital literacy skills that are related to search and tied to the Common Core. For example, this picture of a sloth might be coupled with the question “How many sloths could live in one square mile of jungle?” and a lesson helping students use search tools and critical thinking to find potential answers.
For now, not much more information is known about Bing’s program - those interested can sign up at Bing.com/schools for more information.
Source: Bing Blogs