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GaDOE again expands cybersecurity resources for school districts

The Georgia Department of Education is continuing its work to ensure school districts have the cybersecurity infrastructure and resources they need – an essential step to safeguard student data, particularly in a national environment when cybersecurity breaches are on the rise.

At its May meeting, the State Board of Education approved State School Superintendent Richard Woods' recommendation to provide access to cybersecurity training for all school district staff throughout the state. The KnowBe4 Cyber Security Awareness and Training Program will give districts access to cybersecurity professional development for all staff, a phishing assessment platform to assess staff on malicious email identification and knowledge, and reporting tools for phishing assessment and analysis.

GaDOE is dedicating $1,456,954 in federal funds to provide the program at no cost to school districts.

“It is our essential responsibility in public education to safeguard student data and privacy," Superintendent Woods said. “We're continuing to work to ensure school districts have the cybersecurity tools and resources they need, without adding additional costs at the district or school level."

“These tools give districts a much-needed advantage in the effort to keep the student and staff data secure," GaDOE Chief Information Officer Dr. Keith Osburn said. “We have an historic opportunity to provide training, strategies and tools available to our all districts that need them without requiring any local expense."

GaDOE has also provided a nationally recognized cybersecurity platform to school districts, which allows them to view their technology infrastructure assets from an external perspective. In addition to exposing any vulnerabilities and providing recommendations for remediation, the platform also generates an industry-standard scorecard of each school district's technology ecosystem, which can be used to focus efforts for improvement.​​