SketchUp for Schools and Legal Requirements for Illinois (US)


This is my annual appeal to Trimble/SketchUp to provide official support for schools in states such as Illinois to use the online K-12 specific version of theis software. To make a long story short, due to a student privacy law enacted in 2021 (SOPPA), any software tool that is marketed to K-12 students needs to have paperwork filled out to be accessible legally in any school, regardless of whether or not data is collected. At this time, SketchUp/Trimble has not completed this form for any school district in Illinois. Unfortunately, this means that SketchUp for Schools is legally not allowed for use in Illinois schools.

The good news is that school districts are allowed to “share” or reference the paperwork from other school districts, so Trimble does not need to complete paperwork for every district in the state. @colin and @CaseyG is there someone at Trimble/SketchUp that we might be able to work with to help make sure that SketchUp is accessible in my district (and the other districts across Illinois)?

This is an example of the documentation that districts are required to complete:

Thank you in advance for your help! This is especially important now that state grants for the installable version of SketchUp were discontinued in 2022.

Thanks for using the @ command to get my attention @bsteinbach. It makes it a lot easier to locate urgent threads and get a reply drafted in a timely manner. I can’t make any promises about getting all of this filled out but I can pass it along to our expert on this sort of thing and see if we can do anything with it.

Thanks, @CaseyG. I look forward to hopefully getting this figured out. My middle school students are currently using an installed version of SketchUp for Mac and I’d love to be able to streamline our learning process and utilize some of the great new lessons that your EDU team has put together.

Not in Illinois, but glad you asked this. More and more districts are moving towards these guidelines around bringing in tools, and for good reason, and it is surprisingly difficult to get this process completed with tools.

Hi @bsteinbach, can you share a version of the agreement that is not already filled out? If it can cover the entire state then we are a lot more likely to get it filled out by our legal team. These documents often require our legal team to review them in full and we get numerous requests for these to be filled out so having a clean version to share with them will save us a few headaches later on.

Hi @CaseyG, thanks for responding! I’m attaching a blank agreement that is the Illinois specific version of the National Data Privacy Agreement. Exhibit E in the agreement is what would allow the document to be uploaded to the online database and shared between every school district in Illinois. If this sounds like something that we might be able to make movement on fingers crossed, please let me know how best to get our district’s Director of Technology in the loop.

Thank you!

IL_NDPA_V1a.pdf (1.4 MB)

Thanks @bsteinbach! I’ll pass along the version you just posted to the people in charge of that sort of thing and hopefully we can get it taken care of. I’ll be in the office today and will try and talk to @Tori_SU about getting this one fast tracked.

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Thanks, @CaseyG. I’ll be on the lookout for next steps from you!

Hi @CaseyG! Any updates on moving this forward? We’d love to be able to utilize SketchUp for Schools (with your likeness!!) in the new year. Thanks!

We have a meeting with Legal this afternoon to discuss a number of forms that need to be filled out. I’ll make sure yours is included in the batch we are reviewing.

I realize that is not an ideal answer but please understand we get literally hundreds of these requests and while we do our best to answer as many as possible and answer them as quickly as possible, we are a small team and can’t answer everything in a timely manner. I am really hopeful that we can get this resolved today but I can’t make any promises.

Hi @CaseyG. I hope you had a great holiday. Were you able to share this document with the legal team earlier last month? Anything that you might be able to share at this time? Thank you again for all of your assistance!

Hi bsteinbach, thanks for the post. I did have a nice holiday and hope you did too. I was able to get the document passed off to the right people. I can’t make any promises as to what they will say or when they will get back to me but I am doing my best to get this figured out. I am just as eager to get you and your students up and running with SketchUp as you are!

I’ll go ahead and @Tori_SU on this thread so she can take a look at this too. She has more contacts than I do and may be able to get some additional information for us on what is going on.

Hi @CaseyG and @Tori_SU. Any updates on this process? I appreciate your support in bringing Sketchup for Schools to more schools in our state.

Hi @CaseyG and @Tori_SU. Just following up since it has been nearly three months since our last communication. Is there any update on this front? We’re in the process of planning budgeting for next year and would love to have an answer for budgeting purposes.

Thank you!

Hi @bsteinbach sorry for the delay in my reply. Unfortunately our legal team has been positively snowed under with work and had to make a policy change. Due to their increased workload they no longer have time to work on unique papers for schools and districts. We are still trying to work out the final version of our new policy and are hopeful that it will meet your needs but as it stands I can not offer any updates on this topic at this time.

I really feel for you and your students on this and wish there was more I or the rest of the team could do, but we lack the ability to do anything.