10 Parent Guide

Digital safety is of the utmost importance. Intentional, frequent discussions with your student of any age, are necessary and allow you to be proactive in protecting your student and further educating him/her. Experts warn that students are most vulnerable to online dangers while at home. Please note the following suggestions, as they might be of assistance in further educating your student about appropriate use of technology including the Device and home Internet use.

Beyond school, parents must take responsibility for their student's use of technology and the Internet in alignment with the South Washington County Schools Policy 524 (Acceptable Technology Use and Safety Policy). While the District has purchased filtering software that will be enforced on both the school's network and outside of the school's network, filtering does not take the place of quality supervision. As a parent, you are responsible for monitoring your student's use of District-provided educational technology. This includes Internet use at home or any other remote location outside of school.

10.1 Set Expectations

Regularly share your expectations with your student about accessing only appropriate sites and content, as well as being respectful and responsible when online (even when parents aren't watching). Understand that your student's use of many technologies (such as computers, iPods, video game systems, and cell phones) likely gives your student the ability to connect to unfiltered public wireless networks (such as in a library or coffee shop, by picking up a neighbor's wireless signal, or connecting to the Internet through a cell service). Therefore, it is important to maintain regular, open dialog about Internet use and access. Discuss your expectation for appropriate use and behavior.

10.2 Monitor & Limit Screen Time

Screen Time Experts suggest having students surf the Internet in a central place at home, such as the kitchen or family room, rather than away from adult supervision or behind a closed door. Know what your student is doing with technology and how his or her time is being spent. Technology can be a great tool and resource, but also has the potential to be a big distractor. Help your student learn to focus on completing tasks or assignments prior to engaging in other Internet activities. Teaching today's students how to manage multiple sources of information and potential distractions is a critical life skill, one best learned before heading off to college or the workplace.