The Australian Computing Academy and Grok Learning are joining forces to become one unified organisation: Grok Academy.
See below for some common questions about this change and more information on how it will affect you.
I thought the ACA and Grok were one organisation already?
Yes, we do a lot of work together, so it's confusing! The fact we were two separate organisations made some of that work more difficult. Becoming one organisation will make it easier for us to create more resources and provide you with better support. Experts from both teams can work together to create a smoother experience for you and your students. From discovering and enrolling in courses, to curriculum questions, workshop bookings and bug fixes, bringing our teams together makes a better experience for everyone.
Where do I email for help - Grok or ACA?
For the moment, you can continue to email either organisation (firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com) and we will be able to help you out. Soon it will be much simpler as there will be one email address and one help desk for all your enquiries.
Will you still run competitions?
Yes, we will still run competitions! Our schedule will stay as it is for the moment (4 competitions a year). We may make changes in the future if teacher feedback suggests a new schedule would be better.
Where’s my data?
We are looking into options for new systems to help us store and manage user data more efficiently, but we are committed to storing all your data in Australia.
Accessing the new site
Do I need to do anything?
Right now, no. You can continue using the Grok Learning and ACA sites the way you always have.
Once we migrate you over, the main change you will notice is that you will go to a different web address to log in, but the main processes on the platform – registering students, assigning courses, Live Classroom etc will all stay the same. You will now also be able to see all the ACA and Grok resources and other content in the one place. So you should find the change to be minimally disruptive and overall a significant improvement.
What will happen to SSO / SAML logins?
If you log into Grok Learning currently using SSO or SAML, nothing will change for you, you will be able to continue using this method on Grok Learning until we move you over to Grok Academy.
If you are the technical contact at your institution, we will contact you when we are ready to set up your integration on the new Grok Academy website.
Is my progress saved?
Yes, all your progress and account information will be migrated over to Grok Academy. You won't lose anything.
Pricing and Funding
I have always used the ACA resources for free, do I have to start paying now?
The ACA's DT Challenges were funded by the Australian Government up until the end of 2020 for students in Years 3–8. That funding has now come to an end: the DT Challenges will only be accessible in 2021 with a paid Grok Academy subscription.
We are offering significant discounts to schools that have previously only used the DT Challenges. Visit the pricing page for more information or request a quote today.
Through the generous support of our industry sponsors, the Schools Cyber Security Challenges will continue at no cost to Australian schools. The ACA's unplugged activities, e.g. DT@home and our Unpacking the Curriculum guide along with recordings of the ACA webinar series will all also remain free.
I thought you were funded by the Government?
The Australian Computing Academy was funded by the Australian Government to provide Digital Technologies resources to Australian students in Years 3–8. The recent Federal budget confirmed that this funding would finish up at the end of 2020, as originally planned.
What will happen to already-purchased subscriptions or site licences?
These will all be honoured. You will still be able to access all our school courses and competitions as you could previously. The only change you will notice is that when the time comes to renew your subscription or site licence you will likely purchase it from Grok Academy rather than Grok Learning.
Are you still going to run PD?
Yes, we will run Professional Development workshops and webinars and you can still use our online courses for PD. As we continue the process of becoming one organisation we may even start doing more PD!
Not For Profit Status
If you’re a not for profit (NFP), does that mean the resources are free?
While we are not for profit, we will not be able to make everything free. We still have costs that we need to cover. However, you can be assured that we will keep the costs as low as possible. Every dollar you spend on Grok Academy will be used to improve our content and your experience.
Why are you going to be Not For Profit?
Because it will allow us to do more for you. We will be able to attract sponsorship and government funding, giving us more funds to do more for you. We are not here to make a profit, we are here to make a difference.
Why was Grok Learning created as a for-profit entity initially?
We started Grok Learning as a for-profit entity because it gave us flexibility and we already did not-for-profit activities in the University of Sydney, under the banner of the National Computer Science School (NCSS).
We started Grok Learning to help students learn to code, but we didn’t know exactly how we would do that most effectively. Being for profit meant we could change our approach and grow into new areas as we worked out where we wanted to be.
Now we have a clear path and mission. Our approach is mature enough that we know what we are doing (most of the time!) and how we are going to do it – which means now is the perfect time to transition to a new not for profit organisation.