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Internet filters and best practice

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Started by Mary St George 07 Jun 2012 12:25pm () Replies (5)

What is the current thinking around the best practice use of internet filters in New Zealand schools? I find them so frustrating. I've had a bit of a whinge on my blog: http://creatingcurriculum.wordpress.com/2012/06/07/this-is-the-internet-and-its-out-to-get-you/


  • Jane Armstrong Bos (View all users posts) 07 Jun 2012 3:14pm ()

    To me the most important thing rather than filtering is to teach students how to become good digital citizens, which includes:

    • understanding how to search for information and filter through that critically to find useful and reliable information
    • understanding about copyright - both in using content from the Internet and posting content onto the Internet 
    • knowing what to do if they reach inappropriate sites
    • knowing about their digital footprint and the implications this may have for them 
    • knowing how to behave in social media sites and how to deal with inappropriate comments or questions

    Our students have access to the Internet 24/7 so relying on filtering sites to protect them is not teaching them how to be a digital citizen outside of school hours. Students need to build skills and knowledge to effectively manage cyber challenges themselves, and become confident and successful digital citizens.

    There are some useful resources on Enabling e-Learning

    • Digital citizenship modules - in particular you might be interested in Digital citizenship and cybersafety in the classroom
    • Digital citizenship - page has an interesting School Story from St HIlda's Collegiate who  keep their Internet as open as possible and manage its usage by educating their students.
    • Digital citizenship webinar - yesterday's webinar with Jenny Clarke - principal Kuranui School, Wendy Kofoed - principal Newmarket School, and Sean Lyons - NetSafe was great. The principals and their staff shared their schools' journey to developing digital citizenship while Sean shared resources from NetSafe to support schools with implementing and teaching about digital citizenship.
  • Mary St George (View all users posts) 07 Jun 2012 6:56pm ()

    Useful thoughts, thank you. I think that quite a few teachers are moving towards similar views from my reading around teacher blogs, Twitter chats and so on. Is this a majority position yet, do you think?

  • kidsincharge (View all users posts) 08 Jun 2012 8:29am ()

    Watchdog works fine. Digital citizenship is very important. Don't get your own proxy server.

  • Annemarie Hyde (View all users posts) 08 Jun 2012 8:45am ()

    It is really important that the teaching staff are aware of cybersafety, such as security settings on Facebook, safe mode on You Tube - so that they can monitor, guide and facilitate discussion about being good digital citizens and being safe.  We still filter some things and lack of teacher knowledge is the main reason. 

    Cost is another reason for having some restrictions.  I have no problems with kids making us pay over our monthly allowance as long as it's educational and not games they could play at home.  

    Being accountable to parents in that we are taking all reasonable care, is another reason for having Watchdog.

    I look forward to a time when we can leave it open; and we are working towards that.

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