Most school technology acceptable use policies (AUPs) contain these kinds of phrases:
- “Students shall not use technology unless authorized by appropriate school personnel.”
- “The use of the Internet is a privilege, not a right, and inappropriate use will result in cancellation of those privileges.”
- “Students will not access or modify other accounts, data, files, and/or passwords without authorization.”
- “You will be held responsible at all times for the proper use of district technology resources, and the district may suspend or revoke your access if you violate the rules.”
- “Users have no right to privacy while using the district’s Internet systems. The district monitors users’ online activities and reserves the right to access, review, copy, store, or delete any electronic communications or files. This includes any items stored on district-provided devices, such as files, e-mails, cookies, and Internet history.”
- And so on…
That’s a lot of legalistic language. That’s a lot of negativity.
How about an empowered use policy (EUP) instead? In other words, instead of saying NO, NO, NO! all the time, how about saying yes? Here’s one to consider…
[SCHOOL / DISTRICT NAME]
When it comes to digital technologies in our [school / district], please…
- Be empowered. Do awesome things. Share with us your ideas and what you can do. Amaze us.
- Be nice. Help foster a school community that is respectful and kind.
- Be smart and be safe. If you are uncertain, talk with us.
- Be careful and gentle. Our resources are limited. Help us take care of our devices and networks.Thank you and let us know if you have any questions.
Is there anything major that this EUP doesn’t address? Other thoughts or reactions? Help me make it better…