HISD Seeks Input On Computer And Internet Policy

June 9, 2010

The Houston Independent School District will hold a public hearing on Thursday at 5 p.m. to gather public input on the district’s acceptable use policy for student use of computers and internet connections as required by the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA).

CIPA is a federal law enacted by Congress to address concerns about access to offensive content over the Internet on school district computers. The law requires the district to filter Internet access by minors to inappropriate matter and to have a policy in place that that addresses the safety and security of minors, unlawful online activities by minors, unauthorized online disclosure of personal information by minors, and restriction of minors’ access to harmful materials

Under HISD’s policy parent who do not wish their children to have Internet access can opt out by signing a form. The district policy requires students using the Internet to:

• Be courteous and respectful

• Use appropriate language

• Keep personal information confidential

• Use electronic services for educational purposes only

• Notify an adult immediately if inappropriate materials are encountered or observed.

The policy also address unacceptable use of computers and networks stating that student must not:

• Damage computers, network or others work

• Install illegal software, shareware, malware or freeware

• Send offensive materials or pictures

• Attempt to access inappropriate material or “hack” into the network, either internally or externally

The regular monthly meeting of the HISD Board of Education will follow the public hearing. Once the acceptable use policy is finalized it will be voted on by the Board of Education.

InstantNewsWestu Staff

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