In a press release today, Microsoft proudly announced that the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), which is actually the second largest school district in the United States, has selected Office 365 as its cloud-based email solution for staff members and students.
"With Office 365, we are supported by an integrated communication and collaboration platform that helps us work more efficiently and deliver better outcomes for teachers, administrators and students. It also aligns with our vision for the district to move away from relying solely on our datacenter; the cloud enables us to free up resources and devote them to other mission-critical activities," said Ron Chandler, chief information officer, LAUSD.
As most of you already know, Office 365 offers cloud productivity to educational institutions, helping them save time and money while increasing productivity and enhancing security. Office 365 also offers collaboration tools so students and teachers can communicate easily via email, video conferencing, instant messaging, and more.
Office 365 will also offer "added benefits" if a disaster ever strikes the city of Los Angeles. If there were ever an earthquake, fire, or other natural disaster, Office 365 allows the district to connect remotely with teachers and staff to keep them aware of breaking news and other district communications, while maintaining security and privacy. Microsoft recently rolled out multi-factor authentication to enhance security to the cloud service.
"An innovative and forward-thinking district is one that supports the modernization of its schools for the benefit of its faculty, staff and ultimately its students. There is no doubt that the Los Angeles Unified School District is leading the way in advancing educational processes through cloud technology," said Margo Day, vice president of U.S. Education, Microsoft.
LAUSD's choice of Office 365 is yet another victory for Microsoft in the battle against Google and the competing Google Apps product. Microsoft struck a 100,000-seat deal with the State of Texas back in 2013 and the company recently teamed with Australian retailer Coles to bring Office 365 to more than 100,000 employees, in 2,300 locations.