Approved 8/16/2010

Walpole Public Schools

Acceptable Use Policy

K-12 Student Use of Electronic Resources

To All Parents/Guardians of Students in Grades K-12: Please read this agreement with your child and then sign in the appropriate locations. Students in Grades 4 through 12 must also sign this agreement. Print-friendly PDF

I. Introduction

The Walpole Public Schools is pleased to offer our students access to the district computer network, electronic resources, electronic mail, and the Internet. This Acceptable Use Policy outlines the appropriate uses for technology in the district, and activities not permitted. All parents/guardians must sign this Agreement, insure their child(ren) in Grades 4-12 also sign this Agreement, and return it to their school. Any questions or concerns about this agreement, or any aspect of the computer network or electronic resources should be referred to your school’s Principal.

II. General Network and Technology Use

The network and technology in the Walpole Public Schools is provided to students for educational purposes, and will be used to support the learning process. All students will be provided a network login ID and password that they should not share with other students. Students are expected to take individual responsibility for his or her appropriate use of the Internet and electronic resources, and follow all conditions and rules of technology use as presented by the Walpole Public Schools. Any violation of the conditions and rules may result in disciplinary and/or legal action.

III. Internet/Electronic Resources

Access to the Internet and electronic resources will enable students to use thousands of libraries and databases to facilitate learning and information exchange. Students should be warned that some material accessible via the Internet might contain items that are illegal, defamatory, inaccurate or potentially offensive to some people. Filtering software is in use, but no filtering system is capable of blocking 100% of the inappropriate material available on the Internet. We believe that the benefits to students and staff from access to the Internet, in the form of information resources and opportunities for collaboration, exceed the risks or disadvantages. Ultimately, teachers, parents and guardians of minors are responsible for setting and conveying the standards that their children should follow when using media and information sources.

Students should have no expectation of privacy in their use of electronic resources provided by, or accessed in, the district. All data storage areas including, but not limited to workstations, external drives, network storage, Internet browsing history and computer sessions etc, may be accessed and reviewed by network administrators and administration to maintain system integrity and insure that the system is used responsibly.

IV. Student Users’ Privileges and Responsibilities – Conditions and Rules

A. Student Users of Walpole Public Schools equipment may:

      • Use authorized hardware and software, under teacher direction, for educational purposes only;

      • Access information from outside resources, under teacher direction, for educational purposes only;

      • Access district networks and the Internet to retrieve information, under teacher direction, for educational purposes only

      • Use computer and network storage for files and teacher approved downloads, for educational purposes only;

      • Use only those electronic communication tools - including social networking resources, blogs, wikis, podcasts, email - that have the explicit prior approval of the school Principal and classroom teacher, for educational purposes only.

B. Student Users of Walpole Public Schools equipment are responsible for:

      • Utilizing technology in the school only under teacher direction and supervision, for facilitating learning and enhancing educational information exchange consistent with the educational mission of the Walpole Public Schools;

      • Maintaining the privacy of passwords and they are prohibited from publishing or discussing passwords, including passwords used for network access, X2 Aspen, and web-based subscriptions;

      • Maintaining the privacy of personal information for all students;

      • Keeping all inappropriate materials, inappropriate text or image files, or files dangerous to the integrity of the school’s network, equipment, and software from entering the school via the Internet, removable media, or other means;

          • Abiding by the rules of Network etiquette (Netiquette):

          • Be polite and respectful in all forms of communication;

          • Use appropriate language and graphics;

          • No swearing, vulgarities, suggestive, obscene, belligerent, offensive or threatening language;

      • Adhering to all copyright guidelines and avoiding plagiarism;

      • Not engaging in harassment or bullying;

      • Preventing damage to computers, printers, etc. from food or drink or from acts of negligence or vandalism;

      • Obtaining permission from the teacher, Technical Support Specialist, and/or Principal before using any personal electronic devices, including removable USB/Firewire drives.

C. The activities listed below are not permitted:

      • Using a code, accessing a file, or retrieving any stored communication unless given the appropriate authorization to do so;

      • Using or attaching any personal electronic devices (including cell phones, iPods, any Internet or network enabled devices) without the explicit consent of the school Principal;

      • Sending or displaying offensive messages or pictures;

      • Using obscene language;

      • Harassing, insulting or attacking others including acts of cyberbulling;

      • Accessing or using non-educational websites, or transferring, copying, or downloading any non-educational material, that do not support a specific assignment or teacher-authorized work;

      • Participating in any communications that facilitate any illegal activities or violate any other laws;

      • Damaging or modifying computers, computer systems or computer networks;

      • Removing hardware and/or software from school premises without prior written consent from the school Principal or his/her designee;

      • Violating copyright laws or committing plagiarism;

      • Using others’ passwords;

      • Impersonating another user;

      • Sharing or publishing any personal information of oneself or any student or staff member on the Internet or through other electronic means:

          • No personal addresses, phone numbers, email, screen names or login information;

          • No identifiable photographs unless appropriate written consent has been provided by the parent/guardian;

          • Only the first name and last initial may be used to identify students when approved for publishing or posting;

      • Trespassing in others’ folders, work or files;

      • Intentionally wasting shared resources (including network, printers);

      • Using the network for commercial purposes, personal or financial gain, or fraud;

      • Intentional use of software, other websites or proxies to bypass the Internet filtering technology;

      • Downloading, installing or storing files for personal use (including image and music files).

V. Consequences

Failure to adhere to these guidelines, conditions and rules of this Acceptable Use Policy will result in disciplinary and/or legal action, according to the Code of Conduct. The ultimate consequences are at the discretion of the Superintendent of Schools.

Disclaimer The Walpole Public Schools make no warranties of any kind for the technology services provided. The user will be responsible for repair or replacement of equipment damaged by malicious or inappropriate use as defined by this policy. Protection of data is the responsibility of the user. The district will not be responsible for any loss in service or data. Use of all technology and networks is at one's own risk. The school system is not responsible for verifying accuracy of any information obtained through the technology or network.

Teacher Responsibilities

  • Provide developmentally appropriate instruction and guidance to students as they make use of the network, Internet, and electronic information resources in support of educational goals

  • Inform students of their responsibilities as users of the district network prior to gaining access to that network, either as an individual user or as a member of a class or group

  • Verify parent consent prior to posting student pictures or student work on websites; identify students by first name, last initial only

  • Respond to student infractions/violations of the Acceptable Use Policy according to the Code of Conduct

Principal Responsibilities

      • Include Acceptable Use Policy in Student Handbook, insure distribution and receipt of parent/student signatures

      • Notify teachers of students who do not have written consent to have pictures or information posted on websites

      • Respond to student infractions/violations of the Acceptable Use Policy according to the Code of Conduct

District Responsibilities

      • Ensure that filtering software is in use to meet the guidelines of the Child Internet Protection Act (CIPA)

      • Maintain an archive of staff electronic mail

      • Periodically review and update Acceptable Use Policies

Student Responsibilities

  • Immediately notify the teacher if:

      • You access an Internet site that displays inappropriate material

      • You receive a pop-up message that warns you of a computer or virus problem

      • You receive any message that makes you uncomfortable or feel threatened

  • Avoid plagiarism or violations of academic integrity;

  • Treat others with respect online, just as you would in any other school setting.

Parent/Guardian Responsibilities

      • Discuss these rules with your son or daughter to ensure he or she understands them

      • Immediately notify the school Principal if your child expresses concern or shares information about inappropriate content or uncomfortable/threatening messages

      • Support the school in enforcing these guidelines

      • Provide a similar framework for your child’s use of computers outside of school, and communicate with your child regarding Internet safety on an ongoing basis

VI. Changes in the Acceptable Use Policy

The Walpole Public Schools reserve the right to change this policy at any time.

Student User Agreement Form

This user agreement must be renewed each academic year.

Student User’s Name (please print)____________________________________________________

School___________________________________________________ Grade______________________


I have read the Walpole Public Schools Acceptable Use Policy for K-12 Student Use of Electronic Resources and appropriately reviewed this document with my child. In consideration for the privilege of using the district's system/network, and in consideration for having access to the public networks, I hereby release the district, its operators, and institutions with which they are affiliated from any and all claims and damages of any nature arising from my child's use of, or inability to use, the system/network, including, without limitation, the type of damage identified in the district's policy and administrative procedures.

______I give permission for my child's name (first name, last initial only) to appear on a district or classroom sponsored website should one be developed.

______I give permission for my child's photo to appear on a district or classroom sponsored website should one be developed.

Signature of parent/guardian:______________________________________________________ Date __________________

Students in Grades 4-12 must read this statement and sign below:

I have read the Walpole Public Schools Acceptable Use Policy and agree to abide by its conditions, rules and guidelines. I understand that violation of these provisions may result in disciplinary action, according to the Code of Conduct, including but not limited to suspension or revocation of privileges, suspension or expulsion from school, and/or legal action.

Signature:__________________________________________________________________________ Date __________________