Parents, Guardians and Students,
On July 11, 2012 the board passed policy JCDAF: Use of Personal Electronic Devices by Students. This policy allows students to bring personal electronic devices to the school to serve as an instructional tool. In order to assist teachers with strategies and procedures on maximizing their effective usage, the Instructional Technology Department has created face-to-face and online courses on how to effectively use these devices within the classroom environment. Teachers are encouraged to sign up for the BYOT course, since it covers a variety of uses and classroom management skills.
There are some misconceptions regarding the policy that need to be clarified. The use of personal electronic devices within the classroom MUST be in support of classroom instructional activities. If a teacher does not have a use for them during the instructional period, devices MUST be turned off and out of view.
Below you will find a copy of the SCCPSS Administrative Regulation that addresses, in detail, these issues, as well as some questions and answers that may be helpful. It is highly recommended that you review this policy with your students to ensure that they are also aware of it. Providing them with additional information may help to alleviate some of the issues that may have developed in regards to BYOT.
::.. SCCPSS Policy JCDAF-R(1)
Use of Electronic Devices by Students
Use of personal electronic devices and other electronic media during the regular school day must be in support of and consistent with the vision, mission and goals established by the Board of Public Education. All personal electronic devices on board property or used during a school sponsored activity are subject to the Technology Resources Acceptable Use Policy IFBG.
Students may be permitted to use their personal electronic devices for instructional purposes and to access the District provided network/internet. Students must follow all directions given by school personnel in regards to using personal devices. Principals can alter, change, or deny the use of personal electronic devices at any time.
Students shall be personally and solely responsible for the maintenance, support, and security of their personal electronic device. All personal laptops are required to have updated virus protection and the latest security patches to the operating system and browser prior to connecting to the network. The district shall not assume responsibility or liability for the theft, loss, or damage to personal devices, nor does it assume responsibility for the unauthorized use of any device.
While on Board property, students are not permitted to use their own personal Wi-Fi, data plans or other types of Internet access provided by Internet service providers/carriers that is not provided by The Board of Public Education. All Internet access will be filtered and recorded.
No student shall photograph, videotape, record, or reproduce, via any audio or video means, another student or staff member on board property without the expressed prior permission of a teacher or administrator. Students are also prohibited from disrupting instruction with ringtones, music, or sound effects.
No student shall have a personal electronic device in their possession during district-wide assessments or state testing. Personal devices must be turned off completely (not simply on silent or vibrate mode) and turned in to a teacher or testing proctor.
Students are prohibited from using any electronic devices while riding on a school bus. These electronic devices include, but are not limited to cell phones, pagers, audible radios, tape or compact disc players without headphones, or any other electronic device in a manner that might interfere with the school bus communications equipment or the school bus driver's operation of the vehicle to and/or from school. (O.C.G.A 20-2-751.5).
School staff may confiscate personal electronic devices, and school administrators may search the device (See Board Policy JCAB).
Students who do not comply with this regulation, or any supporting directives related to use of personal electronic devices will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action. Actions may include, but are not limited to:
•First Offense – Personal electronic device will be taken up and returned to the student at the end of class or the day. A student conference may be held on proper use of electronic devices within the school environment.
•Second Offense – Personal electronic device will be taken up and parent/guardian called to retrieve the device. Parent conference may be held on proper use of electronic devices within the school environment.
•Third Offense – Loss of privilege within the classroom and/or school for 30 days. A behavior contract is signed by parent and student on the proper use of electronic devices may be required before the privilege is reinstated.
For privately owned computers being used in District facilities, the SCCPSS reserves the right to:
Monitor all activity.
Make determinations on whether specific uses of the computer are consistent with the District's Acceptable Use Policy.
Log network use utilized by such users.
Deem what is appropriate use.
Remove the user's access to the network and suspend the right to use the privately owned computer in District facilities if at any time it is determined that the user is engaged in unauthorized activity or is violating the Acceptable Use Policy.
::.. FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Question: I brought my personal device to class but my teacher said I had to put it away. Can I still use it?
Answer: Limited time is provided to cover instruction; therefore, the teacher sets the environment that supports learning. Out of respect for learning, the device needs to be put away.
Question: I need to print something. Is this allowed?
Answer: Unfortunately, we are not setup to support personal devices for printing; however, this may be a future consideration.
Question: My device was stolen at school. Who should I contact about this?
Answer: Bringing your own technology device to school can be useful, but some risks are involved as well. It is good practice to record the device's model and serial number in case of theft. SCCPSS is not responsible for the theft or damage done to the device. If a theft occurs, you should contact a school administrator to make him/her aware of the situation so it will be handled the same way as any other theft.
Question: Am I still held accountable for the Acceptable Use Policy ("AUP") though this is my own personal device?
Answer: Yes. The Acceptable Use Policy for SCCPSS remains in effect even when you are using your own device since you will be connecting to the district's wireless network.
Question: Will there be a penalty to my grade if I do not have my own device?
Answer: Personal learning devices are nice to have, but not an instructional requirement. They will not impact your grade.
Can I use my device’s data plan to access the Internet?
Right now, students must use the school’s wireless network to access the Internet. This will allow for proper filtering of Internet content. It will also prevent unintentional overuse of a family’s data plan, which can result in additional charges by your provider.
How do I switch my phone from my family’s data plan to WiFi?
This may depend upon your phone, but usually you would go to Settings in your Smartphone and turn on the Wifi. You would then select the SCCPSS network.
Question: Is my child required to have a device?
Answer: No. Students will have access to district owned learning devices computers throughout the building.
Question: What steps can I take if my child's device is stolen or damaged?
Answer: SCCPSS is not responsible for any damage or theft of student owned equipment. Keeping track of the device's serial number, model and type will be helpful as well. Theft or vandalism of any kind should be reported immediately to the school administration and/or resource officer so he/she can take the appropriate steps. Damage or theft is still the responsibility of the owner.
Question: What are the school/classroom rules for using cell phones?
Answer: Smartphones are allowed in the classroom for instructional purposes only. Students are not allowed to text or make calls without the teacher's permission. The Electronic Device Policy will still be enforced.
Question: Will my child's internet be filtered at school even though they are using their own device?
Answer: Yes. The Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA) requires all public school network access to be filtered. As long as the student is following the policy and is accessing our school network with their device, then it will be filtered. If they are using their own cellphone service to access the Internet at school, we are not able to filter their access. Hence, we expect them to log into our network at school with their device when they are accessing the Internet.
Question: Some of my students cannot access the network on their laptops or phones. I don't have time in a class period to help them with this. Should I put in a help request?
Answer: Students who cannot access the district's wireless network or who may have technical issues with their device need to take care of this issue by working with their user's manual.
Question: I have students in my classroom who are accessing the Internet using their provider's data plan (AT&T, Verizon, etc.) on their smart phones or laptops, hence bypassing the filter. Is this considered a violation?
Answer: Yes, It is a violation of SCCPSS Policy JCDAF-R.
Question: I have my own laptop and a smart phone. I would like to utilize these tools while at school. Can I access the wireless network as a district staff?
Answer: Yes. Staff can also access the district's wireless network. Keep in mind that the network is going to be filtered at the student level for anyone who may choose to access it.
Question: I believe one of my students may have been misusing his device. Should I call the technology office concerning this problem?
Answer: No. Any disciplinary infractions that occur from using technology tools should be referred to a school administrator and/or resource officer. This would be a Student Code of Conduct issue.
Question: Who should I contact if one of my student's laptops is damaged or stolen?
Answer: Personal electronic devices should be handled as any personal property that has been stolen or damage. The SCCPSS is not responsible for any damage or theft of student-owned technology tools. It would be good to remind students to keep a record of the device's serial number just in case a theft occurs.
We hope the information above helps to clarify any misconceptions regarding BYOT and the current policy that was passed by the SCCPSS School Board.