Via Bonnie Roskes of 3DVinci, producers of educational materials on Google SketchUp:
After releasing my book on LayOut, I’ve heard a lot of teachers express regret that their schools can’t afford a SketchUp Pro license. (LayOut is included with Pro, as are some extras like Style Builder and import / export options.)
The $495 commercial license is extremely reasonable for an architecture or landscaping firm, but out of the price range of many schools. So Google offers deep discounts for schools – check out http://sketchup.google.com/industries/education.html. (Why they bury the information for educations under the “Industries” category is a mystery to me.) There are resellers who work with schools, so if you’re interested in any of the Pro features, you’ll likely be able to get them cheap.
Many educators don’t need the Pro version; all of the geometry tools are available in the Free version, as are access to the 3D Warehouse and interface capability with Google Earth. But if you work with older students, perhaps exporting to CNC machines or other CAD applications, Pro can be a huge boon. And of course, the LayOut application, with its seamless integration with SketchUp, can be a great tool students can use to present their work.