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You Can't Get Detention For Your Blog, Can You?

  1. Abrad
    http://www.webpronews.com/topnews/topnews/wpn-60-20060523YouCantGetDetentionForYourBlogCanYou.html
    An Illinois school district unanimously voted Monday night to include the blogosphere within the parameters of its code of conduct. As such, students can be held responsible for blog postings and other activities on social networking sites like MySpace - even in summer.

    High school students in the Community High School District 128 who participate in extracurricular activities, like sports, school clubs, etc., will be required to sign a contract acknowledging that evidence of illegal or inappropriate behavior on the Internet could lead to disciplinary action at school. Parents are also required to sign the document.

    The Chicago Tribune reports that 80 percent of the district's 3,200 students participate in at least one extracurricular activity. A school official said the changes were part of an awareness campaign.

    "By adding the blog sites [to the student codes of conduct], we wanted to raise discussions on the issue," Associate Supt. Prentiss Lea told the Tribune. "We have taken the first steps to starting that conversation."

    The new code of conduct includes language stating that "maintaining or being identified on a blog site which depicts illegal or inappropriate behavior will be considered a violation of this code."

    Students won't get a break for the summer, either. Lea said disciplinary action next year will apply to any blogospheric activity occurring over the summer. The school will not be monitoring social networks or blog sites, but will rely on tips from students, parents, or other narcs in the community.

    The article related that only one parent at the meeting protested the school board's plan, saying that monitoring children's online behavior was the job of the parent and that the new policy would be an invasion of privacy.

Comments

  1. Abrad
    US school district to punish students for web postings

    May 24, 2006 - 3:20AM

    An Illinois school district has created a new rule that will punish students for web postings that depict underage drinking, smoking or other "illegal or inappropriate behavior," according to local media reports.

    The move caused some parents to complain that the district is invading the privacy of students and overstepping its bounds, The Chicago Tribune reports.

    As parents, "we have to watch what they're doing," Mary Greenberg, who has a son at Libertyville High school north of Chicago, said during a public comment period.

    "I don't think they need to police what students are doing online. That's my job."

    All students who participate in extra curricular activities, about 80 percent of the district's 3,200 students, will now be required to sign a pledge agreeing that evidence of illegal or inappropriate behavior posted on the Internet could be grounds for disciplinary action.

    Community High School District 128 Associate Superintendent Prentiss Lea said the changes are part of an effort to get parents, teachers and students more aware of the potential pitfalls of such websites as MySpace.com.

    "By adding the blog sites (to the student codes of conduct), we wanted to raise discussions on the issue," he said. "We have taken the first steps to starting that conversation."

    District officials said they will not regularly surf student sites for violations but said they will follow up on tips from students, a parent or a community member.

    In the pledge, which both students and their parents must sign, the students agree that they will not use alcohol, tobacco or drugs or "exhibit gross misconduct or behavior/citizenship that is considered detrimental to his/her team or school."

    The code of conduct states that "maintaining or being identified on a blog site which depicts illegal or inappropriate behavior will be considered a violation of this code."
  2. Abrad
    Teen blog watch is on

    District 128 addresses MySpace phenomenon

    By Andrew L. Wang
    Tribune staff reporter
    Published May 23, 2006

    In a move that has drawn national attention to this Lake County school district, the Community High School District 128 board unanimously passed rules changes Monday night that will hold students accountable for what they post on blogs and social-networking Web sites.

    For Libertyville and Vernon Hills High Schools, the changes will mean that all students participating in extracurricular activities, including athletic teams, fine arts groups and school clubs, will have to sign a pledge agreeing that evidence of "illegal or inappropriate" behavior posted on the Internet could be grounds for disciplinary action.

    Officials of District 128, which includes the two schools, said about 80 percent of the district's 3,200 students participate in one or more extracurricular activities.

    Associate Supt. Prentiss Lea said the changes are part of an effort to get the district community more knowledgeable about the growing Internet blog phenomenon and more aware of the pitfalls of such sites as MySpace.com.

    "By adding the blog sites [to the student codes of conduct], we wanted to raise discussions on the issue," he said. "We have taken the first steps to starting that conversation."

    Word of the changes had stirred discussion in the district among parents and students.

    Some contend that the new codes of conduct will reinforce that students are accountable for the information they post online. But others, including one mother who spoke at the meeting, argue that monitoring students' online postings is an invasion of privacy.

    Lake Bluff resident Mary Greenberg, the only person to speak during the public comment period, told officials that the district is overstepping its bounds.

    As parents, "we have to watch what they're doing," said Greenberg, who has a son at Libertyville High. "I don't think they need to police what students are doing online. That's my job."

    District officials will not regularly surf students' sites for rules violations, officials said. But they will monitor them if they get some indication--specifically, a tip from another student, a parent or a community member--pointing them in that direction.

    School administrators would treat incriminating information found on the Web the same as they would any other evidence of wrongdoing, as pieces of a larger investigation into the offending behavior.

    The new pledge will be used in all activities for the next school year, including those that start over the coming summer break, Lea said.

    In the pledge, which both students and their parents must sign, the students agree that they won't use alcohol, tobacco or drugs or "exhibit gross misconduct or behavior/citizenship that is considered detrimental to his/her team or school."

    The code of conduct states that "maintaining or being identified on a blog site which depicts illegal or inappropriate behavior will be considered a violation of this code."
  3. Nagognog2
    Minors (kids) have no rights in the eyes of the law. They do have the right to be considered adults at age 12 in some locales (Florida), and sentenced to death - but they have no legal, or civil, rights (USA).

    I would suggest that all the kids in this school district embark on a mighty horrible "Creative Writing" project. Replete with murder, mayhem, drugs, dead babies, and everything else they can think of. Blog the Nazi school board to pieces!
  4. bewilderment
    That's completely ridiculous. It's just plain dumb to enforce school rules while students are not on campus. That's like schools making a rule that students shalt not chew gum while not on school grounds. Blegh, I always hated high school, them making us walk around like cattle with little ID tags on and having to have permission to go to bathroom. Not to mention having to get up at the crack of dawn, a teenager's biological clock doesn't work that way and then they're scolded for taking a nap during an absolutely worthless class. That was five years ago and it still makes me upset.
  5. IHrtHalucingens
    I agree highschools try to take too much control in students lives. At my highschool kids used to be kicked off sports teams, suspended from school, and kept from walking in their graduation for getting alcohol citations on saturday nights at a party that had nothing to do with the school. Its complete bullshit, most kids just accepted it and thought they could do nothing, but in my experience if you go in to the principals office and raise hell they, while making a valid point i might add, they usually give up before you do. For all you highschool kids out there be persistant and intelligent in your defense and just dont take no for an answer, and if need be threaten them with calling your lawyer. They avoid trouble as much as possible.
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