Editorial Team

The Green Acres Academy’s (TGAA) Chembur School has been acknowledged as a ‘Google Reference School’, making it the first school in Mumbai/Maharashtra to earn this recognition. Google awards this recognition to schools that integrate technology into their teaching and learning processes to drive positive learning outcomes. Only 4 schools in India currently hold this status and The Green Acres Academy has hit a significant milestone with this achievement.

The Google Reference School Program is an invite-only program where an existing Reference School or a Google Community member can nominate a school. TGAA submitted an application illustrating their digital transformation journey till date following which they were declared eligible by Google to achieve Google Reference School status.

As a response to school closures following the pandemic, the school accelerated its efforts to build a collaborative learning ecosystem and training sessions were initiated as a first step.

TGAA’s journey to achieve Google Reference Status started with systematic training of students, teachers and parents to improve their skill sets. Understanding the importance of equal involvement from all, the school imparted training on the right use of online tools and G-Suite applications. Workshops and helplines for parents were organized to increase awareness and make the process more productive and enjoyable. The school also implemented efficient tracking mechanisms to get first-hand feedback of how students are coping with the new systems and processes, thus ensuring student engagement is at optimum level.

The educators and the learning strategy team at TGAA put conscious efforts into building a learning environment powered by the latest technology. By integrating Google Workspace for Education that includes an arsenal of productivity tools such as Google Docs, Sheets, Slides and Google Classroom, educational extensions and Chromebooks to enrich the learning experience, the school has successfully modernized the teaching and learning process. Additionally, the Google Reference School also mandates that participating schools have a minimum of 20 Google certified educators. Hence, apart from imparting training to parents and students, TGAA also embarked on internally training their teachers. Now TGAA has a large number of team members who are Google Certified Educators. It leveraged Google resources made available online to educate and train the team on different aspects of teaching with digital tools.

Speaking about the Google Reference School status, Radhika Zahedi, School Director of The Green Acres Academy, Chembur, said, “At TGAA we have always believed in the immense potential of technology to engage students in rich learning. Our team, students and parents have worked hard during this pandemic to bring about a digital transformation in our community and this recognition from Google has further motivated us to keep innovating. Our Chembur School has become the first Google Reference School in Mumbai/Maharashtra and 1 of only 4 schools in India! With this we are thrilled to have the opportunity to share our learning with other schools and educators. through workshops and media events in collaboration with Google for Education We hope to play a part in supporting the digital transformation in schools and subsequently make a positive impact in the larger educational landscape.”

Managed by the Acres Foundation, TGAA operates two campuses in Mumbai, in Chembur and Mulund, and has successfully differentiated itself from others with the proactive use of tech-enabled tools for learning purposes. TGAA has also been known to give its students access to a wide range of learning experiences that go beyond academics. It has developed a curriculum that nurtures a child’s artistic, imaginative and emotional development and technology has further helped children to explore and thrive in their areas of interest.

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