Both Egyptian Ministries are the first organisations to implement Google Apps for education in the region. "We are delighted to be able to offer our students access to Google's unique suite of communication tools," says Dr. Hany Helal, Minister of Higher Education. "We believe that strategic alliances with technology leaders like Google are key to accelerating the contribution that technology can make to the education in Egypt."
'We are very excited about this collaboration with Google,' says Dr. Yousry El -Gamal, Minister of Education, and 'it will encourage all preparatory school students to use the internet as well as give them a sense of belonging to an online student community."
Dr. Eric Schmidt, Chairman of the Executive Committee and Chief Executive Officer, Google says,
'As a company, it has been our mission to provide greater access to the world's information, including personal information. We are delighted that our communication and collaboration tools will enable millions of students in Egypt to keep track of class and activity schedules and stay in close touch with their classmates and teachers. By using Google Apps for Education, Ministries of Education and Higher Education can focus on more pressing technology projects that benefit the school and students.'
Beginning December students logging into the current student email system will be presented with the option to begin using the new services from Google immediately. The service does not require installation or maintaining of any additional hardware or software.
The Google Apps for Education platform, which is hosted by Google and available to users via any web-connected PC, includes the following services:
Gmail - This web-based email program provides 2 gigabytes of storage, powerful spam filtering, and search tools to help users find information quickly. The Gmail interface includes instant messaging right from within your messages and contact list. POP is available for users that would like to send and receive mail from a desktop application rather than Gmail's web interface. Gmail is available in 40 languages.
Google Calendar - This online calendar program makes it easy for people to organize the events in their lives and to share their schedules with others. Google Calendar helps people set up appointments with each other and even publish events on the web. Calendar is available in 17 languages.
Google Talk - This free download lets users conduct PC-to-PC voice calls and send instant messages to each other for free. Google Talk is available in 14 languages.
Google Page Creator - This what-you-see-is-what-you-get web page authoring tool lets domain administrators build simple web pages for their domain, and publish them to the web even if they don't have any website building experience. Page Creator is available in US-English.