Yep, this is a thing. If your school is Google Apps for Education and you guys leverage the huge power of YouTube in your teaching then maybe you have fallen victim to the YouTube Safety Mode automatically being turned on. Basically what happens is that this feature seems to suddenly be turned on and certain YouTube videos are blocked (even though they are educational in nature). It’s frustrating because teachers don’t have the ability to toggle it off or on – it’s just on and a nuisance.
OK – here’s the trick – when my school ran into this I reached out to Google for assistance – here was their reply.
So basically what this very polite email says is that YouTube is not a core feature and therefore not covered in their support. The images this rep refers to are directions on how an individual can turn it on or off on their personal account. With our people, it was not an option and kept pointing them back to the Google Apps administrator – me.
After an exhaustive search through the Google forums I came across a plausible answer to this problem. For our school we had Safe Search (through the Chrome app settings) turned on for all users. What I did was switch it off and this fixed it. I was also able to verify this on a support page from Google – check it out below.
A bit of a risk I agree but well worth it since a lot of our teachers use YouTube, but why Google bundles Google search and YouTube search together is a bit of a mystery – especially since this was not always the case.
So check out the video above which shows how easy it is to change this setting. Remember though, only your Google Apps administrator can do this so please talk to her/him to make the change.