1.   Purpose

Electronic information research skills are now fundamental to preparation of citizens and future employees. Access to the Internet enables students to explore thousands of libraries, databases, bulletin boards, and other resources while exchanging messages with people around the world.



The Big Beaver Falls Area School District supports use of the Internet and other computer networks for instructional and operational programs in order to facilitate learning, teaching and daily operations through interpersonal communications and access to information, research and collaboration.



For instructional purposes, the use of network facilities shall be consistent with the curriculum adopted by the school district, as well as the varied instructional needs, learning styles, abilities, and developmental levels of students.


      20 U.S.C.

      Sec. 6777

As a public school entity receiving federal funds, this policy is also required for purposes of complying with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) and regulations adopted by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).


2.   Authority

The school district establishes that network use is a privilege, not a right. Access to technology resources entails responsibility. Inappropriate, unauthorized and illegal use may result in cancellation of those privileges and/or appropriate disciplinary action.



Big Beaver Falls Area School District’s technology resources are not a public forum.



There is no expectation of privacy for any user of the Big Beaver Falls Area School District’s computer network, including Internet access and e-mail.



Users shall have no expectation of privacy in anything created, stored, sent or received on a school computer.







Big Beaver Falls Area School District retains the right, but not the duty, to randomly or specifically monitor without prior notice any person’s use to ensure that the computer network is being used properly, to ensure that it is used in compliance with CIPA, to prevent waste and misuse, for purposes of maintenance, and/or with reasonable cause to suspect misuse of the computer network. This monitoring includes accessing files and communication.



The school district reserves the right to log network use and to monitor fileserver space utilization by district users.


3.   Delegation of       Responsibility

Educational Use



Internet users are expected to use the Internet and World Wide Web as an educational resource. The Internet and World Wide Web is available in the school as a resource to promote and enhance the educational experience. All school Internet and World Wide Web resources must be used appropriately and explicitly for instructional and educational purposes only.



In making decisions regarding student access to the Internet, the Big Beaver Falls Area School District considers its own stated educational mission, goals, and objectives.



All use of the Internet, network, and computer technology must be in support of the educational programs in which the student is enrolled at Big Beaver Falls Area School District. These will be used to support the district's curriculum, the educational community, projects between schools and appropriate community entities, and especially in communication and research for district students, teachers, and administrators.



Faculty Responsibilities –



The district expects that faculty will blend thoughtful use of the Internet throughout the curriculum and will provide guidance and instruction to students in its use.



1.      As much as possible, access from school to Internet resources should be structured in ways that point students to those which have been evaluated prior to use.



2.      While students will be able to move beyond those resources to others that have not been previewed by staff, they shall be provided with guidelines and lists of resources particularly suited to learning objectives.





3.      Students utilizing district-provided Internet access must first have the permission of and must be supervised by the Big Beaver Falls Area School District's professional staff.



Student Responsibilities –



1.      Students utilizing district-provided Internet access must first have the permission of and must be supervised by the Big Beaver Falls Area School District’s professional staff.



2.      Students utilizing school-provided Internet access are responsible for good behavior online just as they are in a classroom or other area of the school. The same general rules for behavior and communications apply.



3.      The purpose of student access to district-provided Internet is to facilitate communications in support of research and education.



4.      To remain eligible as a user, a student’s use must be in support of and consistent with the educational objectives of the Big Beaver Falls Area School District.



Parental Responsibilities –



1.      Outside of school, the families bear responsibility for the same guidance of Internet use as they exercise with information sources such as television, telephones, radio, movies, and other possibly offensive media.



2.      Parents/Guardians of users under the age of eighteen (18) have the right to revoke their student’s user account.



Administrators, teachers and staff have a professional responsibility to work together to help students develop the intellectual skills necessary to discriminate among information sources, to identify information appropriate to their age and developmental levels, and to evaluate and use the information to meet their educational goals.



The Superintendent shall have the authority to determine what is inappropriate use.



This acceptable use policy will be periodically reviewed by the Big Beaver Falls Area School District and may be modified or added to as new situations arise or as the current technology changes. Determinations may also be made on whether specific uses of the network are consistent with this policy.






4.   Guidelines




General –



All users, whether a student, employee, volunteer or any person or entity given access, are expected to act in a responsible, ethical and legal manner in accordance with school policy, accepted rules of network etiquette, and federal and state law. Specifically, the following uses are prohibited:



1.      Unlawful activity.



2.      Commercial or for-profit purposes.



3.      Nonwork or nonschool related activities.



4.      Product advertisement or political lobbying.



5.      Hate mail, discriminatory, racist, sexist or sexually harassing remarks, threats, and offensive or inflammatory communication.



6.      Unauthorized or illegal installation, distribution, reproduction, or use of copyrighted materials.



7.      Accessing, downloading or distributing obscene or pornographic material.



8.      Access by students and minors to material that is harmful to minors or is determined inappropriate for minors in accordance with Board policy.



9.      Inappropriate language or profanity. Abusive language will not be tolerated. Users may not swear, use vulgarities, harass, or use any other inappropriate language.



10.  Accessing materials regarding the construction or use of explosives or bombs.



11.  Transmission of material reasonably likely to be offensive or objectionable to recipients.



12.  Intentional obtaining, copying or modifying of files, passwords, and data belonging to other users.



13.  Impersonation of another user, anonymity, and pseudonyms.






14.  Fraudulent copying, communications, or modification of materials in violation of copyright laws.



15.  Uploading, downloading or using unauthorized games, programs, files, hacking tools, system utilities, music CDs, or other electronic media (including ROMS).



16.  Disrupting the work of other users – the network shall not be used to disrupt the work of others.



17.  Quoting of personal communications in a public forum without the original author’s prior consent.



18.  Unauthorized disclosure, use and dissemination of personal information regarding the user, minors, or others.



19.  Users are NOT permitted to reveal their personal address or phone number or those of other students and colleagues.



Accessing, saving, forwarding, or printing of any of the above-restricted material is strictly prohibited. If for any reason such material listed in items 4, 7, 8, 10, 11, and 15 is inadvertently received, its receipt is to be immediately reported to the building level administrator.



If any of the above is a violation of the law, it may be referred to the appropriate law enforcement authorities.



General rules for behavior and communications apply when using the Internet, in addition to the stipulations of this policy.



E-Mail –



The use of e-mail service provided by Big Beaver Falls Area School District is for educational purposes only. All communications are to be for approved educational purposes only. Using e-mail provided by services other than Big Beaver Falls Area School District is strictly prohibited. This includes but is not limited to Hotmail, Yahoo Mail, Lycos Mail and other third party mail retrieval services.



1.      Student users shall not use electronic mail (e-mail) without receiving specific authorization from a teacher or administrator.



2.      Personal e-mail accounts are not to be accessed on district computers.







Hacking –



Destruction, modification, abuse or unauthorized access to network hardware, software and files (i.e., hacking) is prohibited. Any unauthorized attempt to access the Big Beaver Falls Area School District's servers, mainframe, routers, networking equipment, Internet filters, or operating systems either from on campus or off campus will be considered an attempt at hacking and is prohibited. Any use of software or Internet proxy to bypass filtering or desktop security software is strictly prohibited.



Vandalism –



Vandalism is defined as any attempt to harm or destroy data of another user, Internet or other networks. Hardware and software shall not be destroyed, modified, or abused in any way. Intentionally altering the files and/or the hardware on district computers will be viewed as vandalism. Vandalism also includes the uploading or creation of computer viruses. Each student will be held responsible for the intentional altering of a computer workstation that occurs while they are logged into the computer network.



Chat Rooms –



Users are forbidden to access any USENET news groups, IRC, chat rooms, or any type of social networking site such as Myspace.com or similar Internet entity. The district’s position is that the utilization of chat rooms presently serves no educational purpose. Chatting, chat rooms, and the use of chat services not authorized by the school district are strictly prohibited. This includes but is not limited to AOL Instant Messenger, Hotmail and others of this type.



Passwords –



Users shall not intentionally seek information, obtain copies of, or modify data or passwords belonging to other users, or misrepresent other users on the network. Users may not give their password to anyone. Users may not send or receive a message with someone else's name on it.



Plagiarism –



Students may not use plagiarized information obtained from the Internet to complete school projects, papers or research assignments. Students must follow the guidelines set forth by the English Department for citing Internet sources.







Student Use Of A Teacher’s Computer –



Under no circumstances is a teacher or aide permitted to allow a student to use the computer assigned to the teacher or aide.



Reporting Violations –



Students will notify a teacher or administrator of any violations of this policy taking place by other students or outside parties. This may be done anonymously.





      P.L. 94-553

      Sec. 107

      Pol. 814


The illegal use of copyrighted software, files, pictures or other electronic information by any user is prohibited. Any data uploaded to or downloaded from the network shall be subject to fair use guidelines.






System security may be protected through the use of passwords. Failure to adequately protect or update passwords could result in unauthorized access to personal or school files. To protect the integrity of the system, the following guidelines shall be followed:



1.      Users shall not reveal their passwords to another individual.



2.      Users are not to use a computer that has been logged in under another student’s or employee’s name.



3.      Any user identified as a security risk or having a history of problems with other computer systems may be denied access to the network and/or other technology resources.



Network accounts shall be used only by the authorized owner of the account for its approved purpose. All communications and information accessible via the network should be assumed by all users to be private property and shall not be disclosed (unless required to be disclosed by this policy). Network users shall respect the privacy of other users on the system.






The electronic information available to students and staff does not imply endorsement by the school district of the content; nor does the school district guarantee the accuracy of information received.





The school district shall not be responsible for any information that may be lost, damaged or unavailable when using the network or for any information that is received via the Internet.



The school district shall not be responsible for any unauthorized charges or fees resulting from access to the Internet.



Limitations of Liability: In no event shall the Big Beaver Falls Area School District be liable for any damages, whether direct or indirect, special, or consequential, arising out of the use of the Internet, accuracy or correctness of databases or information contained therein, or related directly or indirectly to any failure or delay of access to the Internet and district technology resources. Use of any information obtained via the Internet is at the user's own risk.



The Big Beaver Falls Area School District may terminate the availability of Internet, network, or computer technologies accessibility at its sole discretion.






To the greatest extent possible, users of the network will be protected from harassment and unwanted or unsolicited communication. Any network user who receives threatening or unwelcome communications shall report such immediately to a teacher or administrator. Network users shall not reveal personal information to other users on the network, including chat rooms, e-mail, Internet, etc.


      20 U.S.C.

      Sec. 6777

Any school computer/server utilized by students and staff shall be equipped with a technology protection measure that blocks or filters Internet access to materials that are obscene, child pornographic, or harmful to minors (as those terms are defined by CIPA).


      P.L. 106-554

      Sec. 1732

Internet safety measures shall effectively address the following:



1.      Control of access by minors to inappropriate matter on the Internet and World Wide Web.



2.      Safety and security of minors when using electronic mail and other forms of direct electronic communications.



3.      Prevention of unauthorized online access by minors, including hacking and other unlawful activities.






4.      Unauthorized disclosure, use and dissemination of personal information regarding minors.



5.      Restriction of minors’ access to materials harmful to them.



The technology protection measure may be disabled by an authorized Big Beaver Falls Area School District staff member for bona fide research purposes to be undertaken by an adult, provided the adult is not a secondary student.



An authorized Big Beaver Falls Area School District staff member may override the technology protection measure for a student to access a site with legitimate educational value that is blocked by the technology protection measure, provided access is not given to any obscene, child pornographic or other material harmful to minors.



Consequences For Inappropriate Use



Consequences for inappropriate use may include:



1.      The user shall be responsible for damages to the equipment, systems, and software resulting from deliberate or willful acts. Students or parents/guardians will be financially responsible for deliberate or willful damage to hardware.



2.      Loss of access to all or any portion of the district’s computer resources, including access to the Internet.



3.      The Big Beaver Falls Area School District reserves the right to remove a user account on the network to prevent further unauthorized activity as specified in this document.



4.      Vandalism will result in cancellation of access privileges.



5.      Criminal prosecution under appropriate state and federal laws. This is especially likely in the event of illegal use of the network; intentional deletion or damage to files of data belonging to others; vandalism; copyright violations; and theft of services.


      Pol. 317, 417, 517

6.      Violations of this policy by employees of the Big Beaver Falls Area School District may result in suspension with or without pay and termination of employment.





      Pol. 233

7.      Violations of this policy by students of the Big Beaver Falls Area School District may result in suspension and/or expulsion from school, loss or modification of a grade (for example, in the event of plagiarism), removal from the class, and/or receipt of a withdrawal/failure (WF).



Students may also face suspension and/or expulsion from school for communications on the Internet, even if such communications arise from a home-based computer. Off-campus activities on the Internet may be the subject of discipline if the communication causes, or school officials reasonably believe will cause, actual and material disruption or interference with school operations. Students have the right to express themselves unless such expression materially and substantially interferes with the educational process, threatens serious harm to the school or school community, encourages unlawful activity or interferes with another’s individual rights.



Subject to any due process rights, the degree of disciplinary action will be at the discretion of the building administrator and will be determined by the circumstances and severity of the offense.



CIPA Compliance Statement



The school district establishes that any information that is obscene, child pornographic or harmful to minors, all as defined by the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA), is inappropriate for access by minors.



The mere possession of child pornography, including via computer access, is a serious criminal offense.


      P.L. 106-554

      Sec. 1711, 1721

The Superintendent or designee shall be responsible for implementing technology and procedures to determine whether the school’s computers are being used for purposes prohibited by law or this policy. The procedure shall include but not be limited to:



1.      Utilizing a technology protection measure that blocks or filters Internet access for minors and adults to certain visual depictions that are obscene, child pornography, harmful to minors with respect to use by minors, or determined inappropriate for use by minors by the School Board.



2.      Maintaining and securing a usage log.



3.      Monitoring online activities of minors.




If for any reason such material is inadvertently received, its receipt is to be immediately reported to the building level administrator.








P.L. 94-553

Sec. 107

P.L. 106-554

Sec. 1711, 1721, 1732


20. U.S.C.

Sec. 6777


PA Code

Title 22

Sec. 403.1


School Code

24 P.S.

Sec. 4601 et seq


Board Policy

233, 317, 417, 517, 814