Grover’s vision has always been to help more people get more out of life by providing simple and affordable access to technology. And as much as we love to talk about all the ways in which we enable people to have wonderful, fun experiences with the help of tech, enabling productivity and creating meaningful opportunities through access to hardware is equally essential to what we do. 

There’s no area in which access to technology can make as much of a difference in creating or limiting opportunity as in education. This has been made especially apparent by the COVID-19 pandemic. In Germany, as in many countries, the education system has been tested beyond measure. Large-scale school closures in March saw teachers, parents and students overwhelmed. Since then, digitizing education is top of mind for policy makers, education authorities, schools, teachers, parents and students alike. 

One thing that will pop up in these considerations sooner or later is the question of access to devices. Hardware will always play a critical role in enabling digital teaching and learning. And that’s where Grover comes in: Our strength is bringing the newest and best tech directly to the people who need it most — quickly, conveniently, and with flexibility in case their circumstances should change. And what better way to support the key individuals affected — educators, students and parents — in the here and now, than to give them flexible and affordable access to the best tech for learning and teaching?

Like many things throughout this pandemic, digital transformation in Germany’s education system has been fast-tracked. But despite such efforts as federal and state governments allocating €1 billion in combined funding to get mobile devices to school children and work laptops to teachers, justified concerns have been raised by experts and parents alike, that these administrative steps will likely take long, possibly too long, to implement — time that students and schools don’t have. People are returning to schools now, and starting into a new semester that is different than ever before, that remains full of uncertainty, and where the ability to learn and teach digitally will be vital.

To do our part in bridging this time gap, we’ve partnered up with Microsoft — a company with a great track record in the education sector — to launch a special back-to-school campaign on Grover.com, featuring the best of Microsoft’s products for learning and teaching, at specially discounted rates. Throughout all of September, students, teachers and parents (and anybody who needs flexible tech) can rent and save on a curated collection of Microsoft Surface Laptops, Tablets and Convertibles. These devices are lightweight and high-powered, with all-day battery life — great for learning and creating from anywhere, whether that’s at home, in a classroom, or in a lecture hall. They’re also powerful teaching tools for educators who need reliable hardware that both supports in-classroom teaching and acts as a virtual classroom extension whenever necessary.

We’re also happy to promote Microsoft’s free 365 Education plans through this campaign, whereby students and educators at verified institutions are eligible for a free Office 365 subscription. Especially high school students and their parents are often not aware of this option and end up foregoing a valuable resource for self-study.

Our back-to-school campaign with Microsoft will run until September 30th, but it doesn’t end there: The campaign is only the first step in a broader strategic partnership between Microsoft and Grover, to bring the right tech to the right people in our education system, and to level the playing field when it comes to technology access — so that all students, teachers, and parents can participate in digital learning on flexible and affordable terms.

Of course, it will take more than just hardware to successfully digitize education. The right software, learning content, digital teaching concepts, technical support, and mindset (from educators, administrators and even parents) are all essential pieces to the digitalization puzzle. And it will be a long road before we can claim that a holistic digital transformation has taken place. But steps like our campaign with Microsoft, and the work being done by dozens of German startups and corporates in the past months, demonstrate that we’re off to a good start. 

Check out the products featured in our back-to-school campaign with Microsoft here.