Fun with GIS 249: The ArcGIS School Bundle

06-17-2019 06:00 AM
Esri Regular Contributor
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The ArcGIS School Bundle is a powerful set of GIS software available to all K12 schools and youth clubs at no cost for instruction. The core component is an ArcGIS Online Organization (“Org”), with logins sufficient for all students and educators. With it, GIS is being used in all grades and subjects, on all manner of technology, across USA and around the world.

The US map of Bundle sites is a little deceiving when zoomed to a local level, as every site uses a common icon. Some locations implement the Org in a centralized fashion, from school district outward, serving a few to many schools under a single license; this is efficient and makes it seamless when students shift from one school to another, but it requires special attention to keep the organization tidy and powerful. The most common model across USA operates at the individual school level, generally with one or two teachers coordinating activities and optimizing the look and feel for their special needs; the challenge here is expanding awareness and use of the resources.

Future blogs will dive deeply into administering Orgs for schools. Effective administration is the difference between an Org that enhances instruction versus one that is simply a bank of digital lockers. These resources will help administrators understand the Org and how to take best advantage of it in instruction:

The current ArcGIS School Bundle has a fixed calendar, running through 31 July 2020. At that time, active licenses will be extended for another three years, perhaps shifting slightly in configuration to serve instruction even better. The ArcGIS platform continues to evolve, with new opportunities coming into view every few months. Esri is committed to providing the most compelling resources to K-12 schools (primary and secondary) at no cost for instruction through at least the most distant milestone currently visible for the Bundle — 31 July 2023. At the accelerating pace of evolution, it’s hard even to guess what will be possible then!

About the Author
** Esri Education Mgr, 1992-today ** Esri T3G staff, 2009-present ** Social Studies teacher, grades 7-12, 1977-1992 (St. Paul, MN) ** NCGE Distinguished Teacher Award 1991, George J Miller Award 2016 ** ** ** Only action based on education can save the world.