Digital education platforms


Government-funded support is no longer available for schools and colleges to get set up on a digital education platform. The closing date for all applications was 30 November 2021.

If your school would still like to have access to a digital education platform, you’ll still be able to sign up and apply directly for either a Google Workspace Fundamentals or Office 365 platform, free of charge.

If your school needs technical support for a new platform set up, you’ll need to fund this alongside other standard ICT support spending.

You should apply if your school:

  • does not have access to a digital education platform
  • has access to Microsoft 365 Education or Google Workspace for Education Fundamentals, but is not yet set up to assign work and communicate with pupils and students.

What is a digital education platform?

It’s a place where teachers, pupils and students can continue education through online virtual classrooms if a school or college closes.

The platforms are purpose-built for remote learning in a way that a school or college website is not.

Teachers can:

  • communicate with pupils and students and deliver lessons via video calls
  • record virtual lessons
  • set tasks
  • let pupils and students work together through supervised group calls
  • give personalised feedback via video or within shared documents
  • continue with formal assessment for learning
  • set up separate classrooms for smaller groups of students
  • develop structured file and folder storage for different users
  • use tools to support staff planning.

The Key for School Leaders website has information on why you should make the move to a digital education platform, if you have not already.

How schools benefited from the programme

Almost 7,000 schools applied to the platforms programme from April 2020 until the closing date of 30 November. You can find out how digital platforms are helping schools in the following blogs from teachers.

How to get support

Free training and support to set up and use technology effectively is still available through the EdTech Demonstrator Programme.