According to the 2022 National Assessment of Educational Progress reading and math exams, 4th and 8th graders fell behind in reading and had the largest ever decline in math: “If this is not a wake-up call for us to double down our efforts and improve education, even before it was – before the pandemic, then I don’t know what will,” commented US Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona on the results.
Educators prepare students today, for the world that they’ll face tomorrow. And, as the past few years have taught us, what the future may hold is anybody’s guess. This is why educators deserve powerful, intuitive, and adaptable tools, like Windows 11, to ensure that all students, regardless of their needs or abilities, can thrive in the classroom and beyond.
Solutions built specifically for education
To better support today’s educators, Microsoft reimagined the Windows platform to help them unlock the full potential of every student with safe and engaging student-centered technology that prioritizes equity and accessibility. The new Windows 11 for Education provide a simple, accessible environment on devices that are secure, easy to deploy and manage, and perform well across the changing conditions of a school year.
In addition, Windows 11 SE devices offer the accessibility, familiarity, performance, and security of Windows 11, in an environment designed for K-8 students. With simplified experiences and curated apps, Windows 11 SE supports younger learners on affordable devices that are pre-configured for student privacy and enabled for remote management through Microsoft Intune for Education.
Top 5 reasons educators love Windows 11
1. Accessibility features at no extra cost
Since every student has unique learning needs, the built-in accessibility features on Windows 11—such as live captions, voice access, Immersive Reader, and Focus sessions—are designed for seamless inclusion. The wide range of affordable, personalized Windows 11 devices were created to support students' neurodiversity and their differences in vision, hearing, and mobility.
New Mexico’s Las Cruces Public Schools district, for example, deployed 25,000 Windows-based devices with Intune for Education to better support the 7 percent of their students classified as economically disadvantaged and the 14 percent of their students classified as learners with disabilities. These devices empower students to improve and succeed in their academic journey regardless of their needs or abilities.
“Deploying [these] devices to everyone helped to level the playing field. We are many years ahead of the game now. We were pushed to think of alternative ways of teaching and to make sure all our students were engaged. Their capabilities are mind-blowing for me and for the students.” - Maggie Romero, Chemistry teacher, Las Cruces Public Schools
2. AI-powered security to block unsafe apps
Windows 11 now includes Smart App Control. Users can download apps with confidence, knowing that AI-powered security blocks malicious software, while enhanced threat detection tools alert them to potential phishing scams when malicious apps or hacked websites request their logins. This means schools can prevent identity theft and protect school data and student privacy while offering administrators, educators, and students flexibility in choosing apps.
Windows 11 SE offers even more app control since students cannot install or uninstall applications. To help educators keep instruction more focused on learning objectives, Windows 11 SE limits app installs to content-filtering, test-taking, accessibility, classroom communications, diagnostics, management, connectivity and support apps.
3. Future-proof technology skills
Windows 11 helps students thrive in tomorrow’s world. With Windows 11, students get a new, simplified interface with tools and features to help them stay focused and organized.
The new File Explorer in Windows 11 lets students organize files and switch between folders with ease. Students and educators can create folders in the Start menu, then drag and drop the apps they need to stay organized and focused on learning. The new Favorites section is the perfect place to pin students’ most used files to better organize and track work. Windows 11 also offers new Intelligent Actions—smart tips such as writing suggestions and search recommendations—to help students hone skills as they learn and create.
Texas City Independent School District is driving 21st century education and robust collaboration with Microsoft Education solutions. Using Microsoft 365, their educators can prioritize curriculum that helps students solve increasingly complex problems beyond the classroom while ensuring that they learn the skills that empower them as digital citizens. Their goal: support students beyond a course’s final grade or an impending standardized test.
“What do our students need to know about technology to be prepared to make valuable contributions when they leave our schools? If you don't use Microsoft products, you are not prepared for the workforce. The other options don’t prepare our students for the real world, and they don’t develop digital citizenship skills.” -Gina Covington, Chief Technology Officer, Texas City Independent School District
4. Online and offline productivity
Educators and students enjoy both online and offline productivity backed up by the cloud. Windows 11 works seamlessly with cloud services so information and apps are easily accessible anytime, anywhere. It’s simple to sync files with OneDrive for easy backup, secure sharing, and almost limitless storage.
5. Easy efficiency for self-managed work
Windows 11 SE offers cloud-only storage, making it easy for students to find their work. With its Start menu front and center on the screen, students can easily find the files and apps they need. Also new to Windows 11 SE, voice search, powered by natural language, helps students quickly find what they’re looking for.
Focus—a new feature of the Clock app—allows students and educators to start a Focus session and complete tasks faster, without distractions to be more productive. Snap layouts and automatic redocking help students and educators better organize what’s on their screen. Using click or touch, students and educators can choose one layout for math and another for writing or grading papers. New interactive touch controls in Windows 11 make interacting with a device more natural. Students and educators can work the way they prefer including multi-finger gestures, voice typing, or digital inking.
Students love Windows 11 too
Ruggedized and spill-proof construction helps students keep their devices safe no matter what the school day throws at them. Students can also work and create all day on a single battery charge1 so they are prepared whenever and wherever learning happens. Windows 11 keeps them connected with their peers and teachers over Wi-Fi and LTE/5G and offers smooth collaboration with smarter video conferencing features like HD cameras and noise cancelling microphones.2
With Microsoft Ink, a fun, new feature, students and teachers can use a digital pen to write or draw in multiple apps on an ink and touch-enabled device. Microsoft Ink works seamlessly across OneNote, Windows, Microsoft Edge, and familiar learning apps in Microsoft 3653 as well as a selection of third-party apps. Windows 11 SE also allows students to express themselves with over 500 fun digital desktop stickers!
Microsoft’s powerful and versatile Windows 11 tools and features work online and offline, making education safe and more productive, and offer fun and engaging ways to express ideas. Learn more about how Windows 11 for Education can transform teaching and learning.
1 Battery life varies based on settings, usages, and other factors.
2 Hardware dependent.
3 Requires Microsoft 365 for Education subscription, which may be sold separately.