The first standard is "Ethical Issues for Safety and Security" . It pertains to these six categories:

  • Social Networking
  • Acceptable Use Policies
  • Netiquette
  • Cyber Bullying
  • Student Data
  • Internet Privacy

Copyright © 2010


Social Networking has been deemed a problem in all educational settings. Teachers and administrators find students browsing social networking sites instead of researching educational material during school hours. On the other hand, social networking can be used as an educational tool in some aspects. Some say social networking should be integrated into education because its part of the real world. A study done by the Pew Research Center's Internet and American Life Project found that "73% of Americans ages 12 to 17 use social-networking websites, up from 55% in 2006". (Davis, pg. 15). Since social networking is on the uprise, lets examine the positive and negative aspects of its use in the classroom!

Here is a short clip of the positive aspects of social networking !

1.) Teachers can use social networking tools for professional development and school promotion.

"Principal Eric C. Sheninger uses the microblogging tool Twitter has become his mainstay for professional development as well as school promotion" (Davis, pg. 14).

"Social networking allows teachers, who often feel isolated in their classrooms, to revolutionize the way they connect with others"(Davis, pg 16).

This same principal was able to have equipment given to the school through Twitter friendships and also brought exposure to the school's programs!

"Through Twitter contacts, he formed a partnership with a company that donated technology equipment and training to the school, and he linked up with CBS News, which brought national exposure to the high school's programs" (Davis, pg 14).

2.) Some schools have developed a Facebook page to keep their students updated with sports and school happenings. Students also have been using Skype to talk to their peers for school projects.

"At New Milford High school in New Jersey, the school's official Facebook page keeps its 1,100 fans updated on sports events and academic achievements." (Davis 14).

This quote continues on by explaining that the Facebook page was a place where students could blog daily when traveling abroad during the Spring. They traveled to Europe to visit Holocaust sites and they were able to write about their experiences and receive comments from all over the world !

"Other students have used the video voice service Skype to talk to their peers in Iowa for school projects"(Davis, pg. 14).

A teacher developed a project called "Around the World With 80 Schools". The goal of this project was to introduce the students to other students in other countries around the world. She built and used a social networking site (Ning) for teachers. This site is for teachers from all countries who wish to participate. Eventually this site gained 300 members!

"Students prepare a list of questions (What's the weather like there? What continent are you on?) and chat with students in Canada, Finland, New Zealand, and Spain among others" (Davis, pg. 15).

3). Social Networking provides global awareness: "Students find it's just as easy to collaborate with a class in England as with the class next door"(Davis, pg. 15).
1.) Social Networking is known to distract students from educational work. During a study of Acceptable Use Policies and if they were effective, a research question was posed; "Has anyone (student or teacher) been denied access to the internet due to infraction of policy?"(Flowers,Rakes, pg. 351). This question referred to whether teachers or students violated the appropriate use policy that was implemented at that specific school.

"Forty-one respondents said that access had been denied because of a policy infraction, and 46 answered "no". The primary reasons for denial of access were either because the user went to an inappropriate site or because of inappropriate use of e-mail" (Flowers,Rakes, pg. 351).

2.) Social Networking can open the door to cyber-bullying and Internet-security. Social networking allows students to bully each other through the internet. Social networking can lead students to a path of insecure internet environments. Predators are a dangerous risk when social networking is involved.

" Popular Web services such as Facebook and MySpace attempt to monitor what students post. However, both make retaliation easier, and they facilitate the assumption of a false identity-both by bullies and victims". (Goddard, pg. 18).

3.) Social networking also emerges personal life with education and this is not thought of a positive aspect.

"Facebook is too much of an intrusion into students' personal and social lives for educators to be using it as an educational method". (Davis, pg. 18).

Also, parents and laws are another factor that get in the get in the way of allowing social networking to be used as an educational tool. Schools need to be careful of the Federal Laws.

"Children's Online Privacy Protection Act, which seeks to protect children's privacy and bars most children under 13 from participating in many websites". (Davis, pg. 19).

In addition to this rule, schools and administrators need to be aware of other laws that might ban social networking.

"Children's Internet Protection Act, which requires schools to provide Internet filtering to prevent access by students to offensive content". ( Davis, pg. 19).


Teacher Actions:
Teachers need to take action and try to integrate social networking into education. There are more positive features of social networking sites for education than negative! Social Networking opens the doors to more for the students and teachers need to start looking for ways to introduce these resources as educational tools. If you read about the teacher examples stated above, it is positive to use these resources as educational tools !

source: (2007). Popular social networking activities. retrieved on 25 April 2009 from


Acceptable use policies are made for computers and computer networks. It is a written use policy tht helps students and teachers undertsand the "ground rules" or limits. These rules and limits are defined and appropriate use is understood and codified. Acceptable use policies regulate user-to- computer behavior. When creating an acceptable use policy the creator must realize "the network is not just a mechanical entity but it is a forum where proper use in an educational setting must be defined"( Reilly, pg.78). An acceptable use policy enforces that, "the computer resources are to be used for school work, then chances are the student is using these tools inappropriately". (Reilly, pg. 73).

Included in a successful Acceptable Use Policy are the following :

- Mission or Goal statements
- Disclaimer statements
- Parental Consent Forms
- Netiquette
- Consequences for inappropriate behavior statements
-Network security statements
Orientation requirement statements.

Here is a link that will lead you to a sample Acceptable Use Policy for grades 2-4 :

Sample Acceptable Use Policy

Acceptable use policies are mostly used to enforce the idea that computer resources are to be used for school work. When they are not used for school work they are being abused and consequences should be involved. This policy ensures that the students and teachers are using the internet and computer for educational purposes only. While students are researching during school hours, teachers should be supervising their internet use. During an analyses of Acceptable Use Policies, schools were asked, "Who supervises or monitors students during Internet access?"(Flowers, Rakes, pg. 351). The response was, "eighty-nine respondents indicated that students were supervised while accessing the Internet by classroom teachers, 72 by librarians, 58 by computer teachers, and 8 by others".(Flowers, Rakes, pg. 351). Flowers and Rakes believe that "Supervision of students while they access the Internet is primarily the responsibility of classroom teachers".(pg. 351).

Teacher Response:
Every teacher should have an acceptable use policy for their classroom. They should go over it with the students so they fully understand it and make sure the parents see it and agree with it also. Teachers should still be monitoring internet use of each student when they are in use. Acceptable Use Policies are helpful and teachers need to take advantage of them !


© 2010 The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia

Netiquette is the responsible use of computer technology. It can be referred to as "Web Ethics". It not only addresses the responsible use of computer technology, but also "the attitudes and behaviors that promote healthy practices when using technology".(Burniske, pg. 44).

Netiquette is defined and explained in an Acceptable Use Policy. A 13 year old boy brought home an AUP to his father after his first day of classes. The AUP was titled "Acceptable Use Policy for Technology". The father asked his son if he understood what it said. The son replied "Yeah, I can't look at porn and if I do whatever the teacher says then I won't get in trouble". (Burniske, pg. 44). In order for netiquette to be enforced by teachers and administrators, students need to understand what it means and what is being asked of them.

Here is a Podcast that explains Netiquette:

In order to enforce netiquette teachers can set consequences for breaking of correct netiquette behavior. Teachers monitoring and talking to students can also enforce netiquette.

4. Cyber Bullying
Cyber Bullying is a form of bullying that is done through the use of technology. Cyber bullying is more psychological than physical. Bullying becomes harder to monitor when it is done through the internet. Teachers and administrators are starting to feel out of control when it comes to cyber bullying because, " the Internet makes it more difficult to monitor. Widely available electronics also make both bullying and retaliation easier". ( Goddard).

Research shows that gender absolutely takes a place in cyber bullying. Goddard explains, "Girls are particularly drawn to electronic meanness". Girls might be trying to respond to a cutthroat society by behaving more like or worse than boys! Goddard states that "boys are more physically overt. It's a self esteem thing". Girls seem to do more direct taunting online, "boys' online violence tends to be through gaming, with fictional characters". (Goddard). Bullying mostly originates at home, on computers and this means that school administrators hesitate to get involved.

Teacher Response:
Teachers can prevent cyber bullying by informing their students about what it is and its consequences. A teacher can show movies or clips about real personal stories that deal with cyber bullying. Teachers can also ask their students to relate personally to cyber bullying. Ask them to write in their journal about a time they have ever been bullied or bullied someone over the internet. Continue by asking them write how they feel about it.

5. Student Data

If a student creates an educational piece of work in school should it be published as public or private? If the students work is published as public it needs to leave out the personal information of the student. Research from Willard explains, "Educators must be aware of the need to protect, the privacy of students in relation to the use of the Internet".( 39). If the students work is published as private it is more secure than public.
Student data should only be data that is used for educational purposes. Student data does not include, "Activities that are generally unacceptable, commercial uses, including purchasing products, and lobbying". (Willard, pg. 39). Appropriate activities including student data are "class assignments and career development activities for students."(Willard, pg. 39). If students are doing individual research they should be monitored to ensure that they are using appropriate and secure websites for educational research. Teacher involved research is successful because the teachers can give a recommended list of research sites to the students to look at. This will keep them from stumbling across unsafe material.

Here is a link to the PDF file of the Student Data Handbook for Elementary Schools:
Student Data Handbook

Teacher Response:
Teachers should be involved and give a list of acceptable websites to the students for research topics. Teachers should also constantly monitor the internet use of each student if possible to make sure they are on task. Teachers also should inform the students about making works public on the web. They should make sure they know to be discreet and leave all personal information out.

6. Internet Privacy

Technology limits privacy because so many others have access to it. Students should keep all personal internet resources out of school. Facebook pages, personal email accounts, and personal blogs should be left at home.If a students work is placed on a website the law requires parental notice and consent! This law is referred to as the Family Rights and Privacy Act. Privacy is not ensured when using sites that enhance social networking because others can mask their identity and easily trick others. Also, hackers can easily retrieve information from others through the internet. There are four main concerns regarding internet privacy:
1.) "Student information that is placed on the district website or otherwise distributed through the Internet bu school staff or other students" (Willard, pg. 39).
Examples are: Name, address, other information.
2.) "Disclosure of confidential student information by staff via electronic communications"(Willard, pg. 39).
Examples are: Name, grades, personal information given through email to a teacher; Permanent record through the use of email.
3.) "Information that a student discloses about himself or herself in email messages or on various websites".(Willard, pg. 39).
Examples are: Facebook, communication, through email or blog.
4.) "School corporate partnerships that provide the opportunity for companies to gather or solicit personal information from students"(Willard, pg. 39).
Examples are: Companies offering free equipment or technology resources to track student use of the Internet.

Teacher Response:
Teachers can teach students about Internet privacy and how important it is to respect it. Students need to learn how to protect themselves when on the World Wide Web. Teachers can list all of these concerns and examples so the students are fully aware of the dangers on the Web. At school a school email account should be given to each student so they don't have to use their personal email accounts for school related work.