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District School Board of Niagara
Policy Education Programs and Student Services

D-01 Digital Technology Use by Students

Date Feb 2012
Review Feb 2017

It is the policy of the District School Board of Niagara to provide access to safe and secure digital technology in support of education, research and Board business in a manner consistent with the Board’s Mission, Vision and Values. For the purpose of this policy, digital technology is defined as the ever evolving suite of digital software, hardware, computer and network infrastructures (existing and emerging technologies) used at the District School Board of Niagara. All users of Board provided electronic communication tools, shall familiarize themselves and abide by the guidelines established in Administrative Procedure 4-02: Internet Access and Use Guidelines for Students, Appendix A: Acceptable Use Agreement for Students Using Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and Policy E-16: Electronic Social Media.

The District School Board of Niagara recognizes the educational value of students utilizing electronic communications systems to enhance their learning through the responsible access to global information and communication. This network is intended to support and enhance student learning and achievement, be made available equitably to all students and be a support to classroom and other learning activities. All students are expected to use digital technology in a responsible, respectful and lawful manner, which must be in compliance with all relevant federal and provincial legislation, the Mission Statement, Beliefs of the District School Board of Niagara, as well as Administrative Procedure 4-02: Internet Access and Use Guidelines for Students, Appendix A: Acceptable Use Agreement for Students Using Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) of the Board.

The Board further recognizes the critical role that parents play in educating their children on the appropriate use of electronic communication systems and in monitoring their use of these systems. This partnership of parents and schools is essential in achieving success in ensuring appropriate use of this ever-changing technology.

Digital Devices

The District School Board of Niagara recognizes that students may have in their possession personal digital and/or electronic devices while at school or at school related activities. This Policy also governs the acceptable use of personal digital technologies and/or electronic devices by students while at school or at school related activities. At all times, the use of these devices is allowed where they are deemed not to interfere with their personal learning or the learning of others. School staff at the school and at the Board level shall determine what, if any, use is interfering with learning.

Digital Content

The District School Board of Niagara provides schools with access to the Board’s digital network that also includes access to all electronic communication systems, such as, Internet, e-mail, Board approved social networks and intranet. This service enables students and staff access to electronic mail (e-mail), numerous electronic databases and other social networking tools to facilitate and promote collaboration for educational purposes. In addition, it provides users with access to an ever-expanding array of digital content and provides the possibility of communication with others in the school, in the local community and around the globe.

For purposes of inspecting, investigating or searching the District School Board of Niagara's digital technologies, including but not limited to internet logs, social networks or electronic mail, with just cause, the Director of Education (or designate) may authorize appropriate officials to bypass any applicable personal password or codes in accordance with the best interests of the District School Board of Niagara, its students, or where ordered to do so by law.

Student Discipline

Individuals who do not comply with this Policy will be subject to appropriate consequences in accordance with the circumstances of the event, and within the parameters of any applicable legislation. Consequences may include, but are not limited to the following, either singularly or in combination depending on the individual circumstances:

  • Limitations being placed on access privileges to the Board’s technology resources;
  • Temporary suspension of access privileges to the Board’s technology resources;
  • Revocation of access privileges to the Board’s technology resources;
  • Appropriate disciplinary measures within the Safe Schools Act; and
  • Legal action and prosecution by the relevant authorities.

References

  • Policy E-16: Electronic Social Media
  • Administrative Procedure 4-02: Internet Access and Use Guidelines for Students