I'll repost this in
January as well as today...
Some questions have
arisen concerning the ruling in October on the Broadband Data Improvement Act
(S. 1492). This ruling contains an online safety mandate for all schools.
I want folks to be aware of it and to understand the implications on
schools. I belong to an organization called SETDA, State Education
Technology Directors Association and they have been trying to clarify for us in
the field the overall language and implications of the bill. I received
this missive just before Christmas....
SETDA has reached out to clarify some of your
questions related to the new internet safety legislation which made changes to
the Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA) and applies to districts receiving
funding for E-rate and EETT. This law only applies to
schools/district receiving EETT or eRate funding. The bullet below identifies
the new requirement and additional information is also available at this link:
- Schools and
libraries must also certify that, as part of their Internet safety policy,
they are educating minors about appropriate online behavior, including cyber
bullying awareness and response and interacting with other individuals on
social networking sites and in chat rooms.
This following statement is the piece that cuts to the
chase... Note that you have a requirement, but districts are allowed to
decide how they meet that requirement. This could be something tied
to your AUP, and also could be some language in your new technology plan which
you'll be seeing guidelines for in early January.
"As you have
mentioned, the requirement is very broad and this new law was intended NOT to
burden districts. The intention is to leave the decisions up to the
district on how to meet the requirement. Districts can meet it in just
about any way e.g., putting materials on a website, distributing fliers, having
an Internet Safety handbook, etc. The only real requirement is that they
have an internet safety education policy and certify that they meet it.
The FCC nor USAC, the E-rate governing board, has yet to issue any kind of
guidance on the policy and it seems both bodies are unlikely to do so in the
Please share this information
with your school leadership and pass along to any other parties in your district
that may have a stake in this arena....
Vermont Department of
120 State St.