Administrative Guidelines for the Use of Technology
Responsible Use of Technology Guidelines/Internet Safety
The use of computers and related technology supports the curriculum and enhances communication. Users, students and staff will access a vast scope of information available in the school system, as well as connections to global resources via the internet. Since neither the West Hartford Public Schools nor any of its staff controls the content of the information available on the internet, users must be aware that some of the information may be controversial or offensive. Users encountering such controversial or offensive information should exit the site and contact their teacher or school administration. Individual users are responsible for their own conduct. The use of computers is a privilege, not a right. As the owner of both the hardware and software, the West Hartford Public Schools reserves the authority to withdraw this privilege. Failure to adhere to these guidelines will result in disciplinary action that may include loss of computer access, referral to legal authorities or other administrative action.
It is assumed that parents/guardians grant their child the right to access the network unless a permission denial form is signed and returned. Furthermore, please note that under no circumstances will PreK-12 student photos on the West Hartford Public Schools website be identified with first and last name unless explicitly agreed to by the parents/guardians or by students over the age of 18.
The District network includes wired and wireless devices and peripheral equipment, files and storage, email and Internet content (e.g. blogs, websites, email, apps). All use of the network must support student instruction, research and professional learning consistent with the mission of the District.
Use of Personal Electronic Devices
Connection of a personal electronic device to any network on school grounds is subject to all rules and guidelines in this document.
- Use of the computers must be in support of education, business, or research within the educational goals and objectives of West Hartford Public Schools.
- Users may access online services, use email and voice mail for school-related assignments, educational, administrative or other professional purposes.
- Electronic communications (i.e. voice mail, email, Internet) should not be considered completely private and secure. Users should not, under any circumstances, transmit or reveal personal or confidential information about yourself or others, including but not limited to: home address, telephone number, password, social security number, credit card number, or confidential or sensitive information regarding students or staff.
- The district has the ability and reserves the right to bypass individual user passwords and to monitor the use of such systems by students and staff. Therefore, students and staff should not expect to maintain personal privacy in the use of the system.
- Users will comply with all school policies concerning acceptable behavior, state, federal and local laws, including copyright laws and those laws prohibiting harassment by computer (PA 95-143).
- Users must not interfere with others’ work or with the performance of the computers, both hardware and software. These actions include but are not limited to: attempting to illicitly obtain passwords or user names, gain access to secure areas of the network, introducing computer viruses, or accessing or altering educational records.
- All users will abide by the generally accepted rules of user etiquette and all applicable school policies.
- Users of district Email systems are responsible for their appropriate use. All illegal or improper use of the electronic mail system, including but not limited to: offensive language or pictures, harassment, solicitation, gambling, violating copyright or intellectual property rights are prohibited. Use of the Email system for which the district will incur an expense without written permission of an administrator is prohibited.
- Bulk posting to individuals or groups to overload the system (i.e., spamming or any similar actions) is prohibited, including but not limited to chain letters and pyramid schemes (chain letters with money).
- Students may not install personally owned or created software on networks or networked computers. Staff may not install personally owned or created software on networks or networked computers.
- Reproduction of copyrighted electronic resources should not take place without appropriate source documentation and permission.
- Official representation of the school or school district (i.e. Internet home page) may be established by obtaining prior written approval of school administration. Approved representations will comply with copyright law.
- Users may access their own personal online accounts, for educational purposes only, with advance permission and when it does not interfere with school–related activities.
- Users will abide by the rules of other computer resources accessed through the school telecommunications systems.
- Teachers will monitor the use of the Internet by students for grade level appropriate use.
- Prior to publishing student work on the Internet, teachers will obtain a parent or guardian’s permission in writing.
- All staff members will exclusively use their WHPS district email account when communicating by email with students and parents. (Board Policy 4090).
- WHPS technology shall not be used for the creation, publication, posting, or distribution of any personal and/or non-school related written, visual, and/or audio correspondence or materials. (Board Policy 4090).
- Employees are to maintain appropriate professional boundaries when using Social Media, as outlined in Board Regulation 4080-R
- All other Board policies regarding the confidentiality of student information and acceptable use of technology are in effect.
- All state and local laws regarding technology are upheld and applicable.
West Hartford Public Schools ensures that students receive ongoing, systematic education in safe, responsible and effective use of technology.
WHPS Department of Information Technology