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MINISTER'S DIRECTIVE NO. MD 2010-02

MINISTER’S DIRECTIVE 
NO. MD 2010-02
Directive for the Acceptable Use of Computer and Information Technology

Supersedes Minister’s Directive No. MD 2006-03

Pursuant to section 8 of  the School Act R.S.P.E.I. 1998, Cap. S-2.1, I hereby issue the following Minister's Directive concerning the acceptable use of computer and information technology.  The directive has four sections:

 1.  Directive for the Acceptable Use of Computer and Information Technology,
 2.  Sample cover letter for communication with parents (Schedule A),
 3.  Computer and Information Technology Rules for Students (Schedule B), and
 4.  Computer and Information Technology Acceptable Use Agreement for Students(Schedule C).

Purpose

The Department of Education is committed to the effective use of computer and information technology to both enhance and improve the education it provides to Prince Edward Island children.  Access to computer and information technology is provided to students, educators and other users in schools in order to support and meet the authorized curriculum.   Safeguards have been established to ensure that both hardware and software are used for their intended purposes.  The Computer and Information Technology Rules for Students, and the accompanying Computer and Information Acceptable Use Agreement for Students, have been implemented to guide and communicate acceptable use to all parents/guardians, teachers and students.

Administration

Prior to giving a student access to computer and information technology at a school, the school principal shall forward the Rules for Students and the Acceptable Use Agreement for Students to the parent or guardian.  Subsequently, the principal shall ensure that a signed copy of the Acceptable Use Agreement has been received from the parent or guardian.

Staff at each school are encouraged to establish school rules which are consistent with this directive and which establish uniform procedures concerning the use of computer and information technology within the school.  At the beginning of each school year, prior to giving students access to the technology, school staff shall: 
 
a) complete item 1 and 2 for students continuing in the PEI public school system
b) complete items 1, 2, 3, and 4 for all students entering  grades K, 4, 7 and 10 as well as      
    students new to the PEI school system. 
  
 1.  Instruct students concerning the purposes and benefits of access to the technology;
 2.  Review the information and responsibilities included in the Rules for Students with students;
 3.  Add the signed Acceptable Use Agreement to the permanent student record file, and
 4.  Update the student management system to indicate the necessary signature(s) have been obtained.


This directive comes into force for all schools on April 26, 2010.


DATED at Charlottetown this 26th day of April 2010          
______________________
Doug W. Currie
Minister

 


Province of Prince Edward Island
Department of Education

                                                             Schedule “A”

Sample Letter

Dear Parents, Guardians and Students:
This letter is to tell you about access to computer and information technology at school.  Please discuss the Rules for Students (Schedule “B”) carefully with your child, then sign and return the Acceptable Use Agreement (Schedule “C”) to your school.

Using School Computers
We want your child to learn about computers and use them at school.  Access to computer and information technology will give your child new skills, additional learning materials and research opportunities.

While this gives many benefits to your child, there is some unacceptable material on the internet.  We have installed software to restrict access to this kind of material, but it could still be possible for students to find it either on purpose or by accident.

We provide all students with an email account.  Your child can use this account from ANY computer with internet access.  Anyone who receives an email from your child can obtain his or her last name, initials and province from the email address plus any personal information he or she includes in the email.

If you have any questions please contact your child’s teacher.


Yours truly,

 

Principal

 


Province of Prince Edward Island
Department of Education
                                                                                 Schedule “B”

Computer and Information Technology Rules for Students

We ask Parents and Guardians to review these rules carefully with your child.

Rules for Students
Please read these rules carefully.  You can ask your parents or teacher about any parts that you do not understand.
  1. We will give you (the student) access to computer and information technology if you and your parents sign the Acceptable Use Agreement (Schedule “C”) and return it to your school.

  2. You  may use electronic information for research purposes if you acknowledge the source in writing and if you  respect the copyrights and school rules.

  3. You must protect your password and not give it to anyone else.  You must not use other people’s passwords.

  4. You may access databases, discussion groups, news groups, bulletin boards, list services and world-wide web sites only according to school rules.

  5. You must not give out any personal information to any person or system on the internet unless it is part of an educational activity under the direction of a teacher who has your parent’s permission.

  6. You should use your email account with caution because people can get personal information about you from your email address.

  7. You must immediately tell your supervising teacher about any information or messages that are threatening or hurtful.

  8. You must not use the computer for illegal activities, to harass anyone, or for any personal activity that could embarrass you or the school.

  9. You must not use the computer to access sites that contain or promote pornography, racism, hatred or any other inappropriate material.

  10. You must not do anything to manipulate, alter, damage, disable or destroy the computer system or software.

  11. You must not use the computer system in any way that interferes with other users, such as using too much bandwidth or storage, or sending spam.

  12. If you use the computer system in an unacceptable way, we may cancel your access, take other disciplinary measures or call the police.  Your supervising teacher, your school, the school boards or the Department of Education can decide what is unacceptable use.

Liability
The Department of Education, school boards, schools and supervising teachers are not responsible for any damages a student or other user may suffer arising from loss of data due to delays, non-deliveries or service interruptions.

Reasonable and appropriate precautions are taken to supervise and monitor student use of information technology.  These precautions may not result in full control of student access to content and information.  As a result, the Department of Education, school boards, schools, and supervising teachers do not warranty the accuracy, quality, and suitability of the content and information that might be accessed.           
        

Province of Prince Edward Island
Department of Education   

                                                                                        Schedule “C”

Computer and Information Technology Acceptable Use Agreement for Students
Before students can use the school’s computer system, parents of students in grades K to 12 and students who are in grades 4 to 12 must have signed this agreement.  This agreement is to be signed  when students enter grades K, 4, 7, and 10 and by students new to the PEI school system. It will stay in effect until the child leaves the school system or until the parent withdraws permission.

PARENT/GUARDIAN AGREEMENT   
I have read the attached Computer and Information Technology Rules for Students (Schedule “B”).  I understand and agree that access to computer and information technology is intended for educational purposes.  The Department of Education, the school board and school have taken reasonable precautions to eliminate unacceptable material.  I recognize that it is impossible to restrict access to all unacceptable materials, and I will not hold any school staff person, the school board or the Department of Education responsible for materials my child acquires through the use of computer and information technology either by accident or on purpose.  I acknowledge and agree that should my child commit any violation of the Computer and Information Technology Rules for Students and school rules, my child’s access privileges may be limited, suspended or  revoked.  School disciplinary action may be taken and/or appropriate legal action may be initiated including release of information to the police or other investigators. 

I hereby give permission to school personnel to grant access to computer and information technology to
my child.

Student’s Full Name (print): ______________________________________________________
 
Parent’s/Guardian’s Name (print): _________________________________________________

Parent’s/Guardian’s Signature: ____________________________________________________

Date: _________________________
 
STUDENT AGREEMENT (Students in grades 4 through 12)
I understand, agree with and will follow the attached Computer and Information Technology Rules for Students (Schedule “B”). If I break any of the “Rules for Students,”the school may limit, suspend or revoke my access privileges, take disciplinary action, and/or start legal action including release of information to the police or other investigators.

Student’s Signature: ____________________________________________________________

Date: _________________________

Please complete this form and return it to the school as soon as possible.

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