Microsoft has a had a strong history of supporting educational institutions. In addition to offering the Surface for $199 Microsoft will now offer a program (U.S. only to start) for schools to tailor the Bing experience for K-12 students by removing all advertisements from search results, enhancing privacy protections and the filtering of adult content, and adding specialized learning features to enhance digital literacy. For those that opt-in, Bing will enable the experience across all searches from within the school’s network on Bing.com, without any need for special software or a different search address. The program is free for any school or districts wishing to participate. Any schools who do not participate will simply get the normal Bing experience with ads.
Bing has the following goals for this program:
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.
If you are a school administrator or know someone that is, please register them here Bing.com/schools and to receive updates and information on how they can encourage their school to participate and support the program.
Source: Bing Blog