What’s new in Google Workspace for schools and trusts – Autumn 2023 

15 August, 2023

What’s new in Google Workspace for schools and trusts – Autumn 2023 

This article rounds up the exciting new updates for Google Workspace for schools and trusts in Autumn 2023.

Google Workspace offers schools and trusts a variety of cloud-based tools and services that are designed to make teaching more efficient and effective. Google is continuously working to improve and add new features to Google Workspace to make learning even easier.  

Here’s your guide to what’s new in autumn 2023: 

What’s new in Google Workspace for schools and trusts?

Grading periods for assignments in Google Classroom.

Google has introduced grading periods, which allows teachers to pull together and categorise grades from the whole school year and apply them to Classroom assignments.  

This information can be filtered with students and grading periods in Gradebook view, giving teachers a new perspective on performance. A great way to highlight any issues in the classroom and help support students even more! 

Grading periods in Google Classroom. See student performance trends over time


  • Roll out from June 2023 
  • Education Plus and Teaching and Learning Upgrade customers. 

Learn more about creating and editing grading periods in Google.  

Easier scheduling for meetings in Gmail.

Instead of organising meetings through back-and-forth emails, Google Workspace has introduced a feature allowing you to organise 1:1 meetings in a much more efficient way.  

This is the perfect way to schedule meetings with students, parents and staff. 

You can propose all the times that you’re free, and the recipient can select a referred time for them. This is all possible without even leaving your inbox – simply write an email and tap the Calendar icon. 

Alternatively, you can create an event, and add all the necessary information, and this appears as the body of the email so your recipient can choose to accept.  

Once a meeting time has been accepted, it syncs with both of your calendars – great for keeping track of meeting times and preventing double booking.  

Save time scheduling meetings in Gmail - New updates for Google Workspace for schools Autumn 2023


  • Rollout from 11 July 2023. 
  • All Google Workspace customers and users with personal Google accounts. 

Learn more about negotiating time directly in Gmail.  

Simplified access controls for Google Meet. 

Schools now have more control over access to online meetings.  

There are three different access levels in Google Meet. 


  • Anyone with a meeting link can join and does not have to ask to join. 


  • Only those invited via a Google Calendar link can join. 
  • Guests are not able to join before you.  


  • Anyone within your organisation can join without having to ask.  
  • Anyone outside your organisation must ask before joining. 
  • Guests can join before you.  

For education users, the following settings are now default: 

  • If you use Meet with a paid school account, then by default, all new meetings are set to Trusted. 
  • Any meetings created via Google Classroom are Restricted. 
Prevent students joining online meetings before you in Google Meet


  • Rolling out gradually from 17 July 2023  
  • All Google Workspace customers and personal google Accounts. 

Find out more about simplified access controls in Google Meet.

Use polls and Q&As during Google Meet

When teachers stream an online lesson, they can include Q&A and polls, which are a great way to get students engaged in learning and check comprehension and understanding. 

The Q&A feature gives students the opportunity to ask questions and upvote the most asked questions without adding disruption to the lesson.  

Polls are a great way to interact with students during teaching and gather valuable feedback on their understanding, giving you the chance to adapt the lesson to their needs.  

Set up Q&As in livestreams in Google Meet


  • Rollout starts 28 June 2023. 
  • Google Workspace Enterprise Essentials Plus, Enterprise Starter, Enterprise Plus, Enterprise Standard, Education Plus, and the Teaching and Learning upgrade customers 

More information about using polls and Q&A in Google Meet.  

Add hyperlinks to messages in Google Chat.  

A final honourable mention – you can now add hyperlinks to text in Google Chat when composing or editing a message. This allows you to keep messages and announcements tidier and less confusing without visibly busy links in messages. It’s a small update, but it can make a huge difference in keeping communication simple.  

Add hyperlinks to messages in Google Chat - New updates for Google Workspace for schools Autumn 2023


  • Rollout starts 13 July 2023. 
  • All Google Workspace customers and users with personal Google Accounts. 

Find out more about adding hyperlinks in Google Chat.  

Our Salamander Integration Suite helps schools effortlessly manage user accounts in Google Workspace, giving teachers and students access to everything they need to teach and learn.

Talk to a member of our team today to find out how we can support your school or trust. 

Courtney Farrow

Written by Courtney Farrow

Marketing and Social media

Courtney supports SalamanderSoft in creating engaging online content for the company website and social media channels. She has over ten years of experience in digital content creation and her company Bloom Creative specialises in helping software and tech brands attract, convert and retain customers.

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