STATUTORY PROVISIONS : Children’s Internet Protection Act, 47 U.S.C. 254(h)(5); Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, 20 U.S.C. 1232g
Legal Reference: 17 U.S.C. 101, 102, 106, 107,108, 110, 117; G.S. 115C-523, -524
In accordance with goals established in Board policy, the Board and Headmaster will strive to make computers available to all students and to personnel who would be assisted by them. All computers are under the control of the Board, including hardware, software and data and word processing files stored on the computer. No personal software or files are to be kept on the computers. Personal software or files are not to be used on the computer unless sufficient steps, as defined by the Headmaster or designee, have been taken to protect the computer from viruses or any other potential damage. All laws, including copyright laws, will be complied with in the use of computers. Under no circumstance may software purchased by the school be copied for personal use.
Pinnacle Classical Academy is committed to the use of electronic resources and technology to enhance the administrative, teaching and learning opportunities for students, administrators, faculty and staff. Therefore, students, administrators, faculty and staff are encouraged to utilize these resources within the guidelines set forth in this Acceptable Usage Policy.
Goals of the electronic network are:
- To support the implementation of the local curricula and the Core Knowledge K-8 Sequence, North Carolina Common Core and Essential Standards, and STEM
- To enhance learning opportunities by focusing on the application of skills in information retrieval, searching strategies, research skills, and critical thinking
- To encourage appropriate career development
- To promote life-long learning, The Acceptable Use Policy addresses the ethical and appropriate use of our technology resources, the security of our network, and the safety of our students, administrators, faculty and staff. While we continue to believe in intellectual freedom and access to information, we will take reasonable precautions to limit access to controversial and/or offensive materials by:
- Using software and hardware that may block the materials
- Providing adult supervision
- Training students to appropriately use technology
Responsibilities of Students: The ultimate responsibility for a student's actions rests with the student and his/her parent/guardian(s). Students will:
- Learn and follow the Acceptable Use Policy set forth by Pinnacle Classical Academy
- Return a permission form signed by the student and a parent or guardian stating they agree and will adhere to all guidelines and policies and assume responsibility for their own actions
Board policy recommendations:
- Prevent user access over its computer network to, or transmission of, inappropriate material via Internet, electronic mail, or other forms of direct electronic communications;
- Prevent unauthorized access and other unlawful online activity;
- Prevent unauthorized online disclosure, use, or dissemination of personal identification information of minors; and
- Comply with the Children’s Internet Protection Act [Pub. L. No. 106-544 and 47 USC 254(h)].
The headmaster shall ensure that school system computers with Internet access comply with federal requirements regarding filtering software, Internet monitoring and Internet safety policies. The headmaster shall develop any regulations and submit any certifications necessary to meet such requirements.
Guidelines for Use of Technology Resources Acceptable Use
Pinnacle Classical Academy’s networks and technology resources are to be used in a responsible, efficient, ethical and legal manner and must be in support of the educational objectives of Pinnacle Classical Academy. General school rules for behavior and communications apply as outlined in the Student Code of Conduct (Rule Violation 22). Transmission of any material in violation of any federal or state regulation is prohibited.
This includes but is not limited to the following:
- Violating copyright laws
- Using peer-to-peer file-sharing programs
- Accessing email (e.g. Yahoo mail), chat rooms, and other forms of direct electronic communications (e.g. instant message services) except those set up and/or approved by school administration
- Forwarding personal communications without the author's prior consent
- Using threatening or obscene material
- Distributing material protected by trade secret
- Utilizing the network for commercial purposes
- Using offensive or harassing statements or language including profanity, vulgarity, and/or disparagement of others based on their race, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, and religious or political beliefs
- Sending or soliciting sexually oriented messages or images
- Sending chain letters or soliciting money for any reason
- Changing settings on computers
- Disrupting the use of the network
- Accessing programs, computer equipment, software, or proxy websites not designated for student use, including “hacking” and other unlawful activities to circumvent the firewall or network security
- Providing political or campaign information
- Non-Instructional use of network, computer and internet resources
Network Etiquette Rules
These rules include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Be polite – rudeness is never acceptable
- Use appropriate language—swearing, using vulgarities, or any other abusive language is inappropriate
- Never provide any personal information (such as address, telephone number, social security number, or checking/savings account numbers)
- Do not disrupt network functions or attempt to gain unauthorized access to system programs or computer equipment
- Do not send electronic communications fraudulently (i.e., by misrepresenting the identity of the sender)
- Do not use resources on the PCA network or violate another person’s rights by harassing, defaming, sending messages, transmitting text files, documents, posting messages, or other material that may be considered obscene, profane or harmful to minors or any individual.
- Users are prohibited from cyberbullying and other harassing activities conducted through PCA networks. Harassment includes, but is not limited to, slurs, comments, jokes, innuendoes, unwelcome compliments, cartoons, visual depictions, pranks, or verbal conduct relating to an individual that (a) have the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment; (b) have the purpose or effect of unreasonable interfering with an individual’s work or school performance; or (c) interfere with school operations.
- Any use that violates state or federal law is strictly prohibited.
- Assume all communications and information accessible via the network are private property and copyrighted
Pinnacle Classical Academy will not be responsible for any damages suffered bythe user, including loss of data resulting from delays, operator error, hardware failures non-deliveries, network interruptions or inaccurate information. The user accepts personal responsibility for any information obtained or delivered via the network, including the sharing of personal information such as home address, checking account and credit card information.
Attempts to access information on any Pinnacle Classical Academy network components as any other user or to share a password will result in cancellation of user privileges. If a security problem is identified, notify the technology specialist at the school. After signing the Acceptable Use Policy, Internet and network privileges will be assigned. Passwords shall be kept private and shall be changed regularly. Internet security software and hardware is used to help filter out inappropriate websites.
All personnel and students are responsible for safeguarding information located on
Pinnacle Classical Academy computer systems. Their responsibilities include but are not
- Keeping usernames and passwords private
- Storing files in home directories, in shared folders on the network servers or other storage devices.
- Logging off the computer
Software and Hardware Security
Only members of the Technology PLC Team (or persons designated by the Technology Specialist) are permitted to install software and hardware in Pinnacle Classical Academy. All software and hardware purchased for use within Pinnacle Classical Academy’s computer network will be reviewed by the Technology Specialist to ensure compatibility and network security. The Technology Specialist shall catalogue purchased and donated software and hardware.
Security on any computer system is a high priority, especially when the system involves many users. Attempts to login to the system as any other user or to share a password will result in disciplinary action. If a security problem is identified, notify the Technology Specialist at the school. Information relating to or in support of illegal activities may be monitored and reported to the authorities.
Email Mail and other Electronic Communication Tools
Students may be given individual email accounts for instructional purposes. Only email accounts set up and monitored by PCA may be accessed. School rules will govern their use and email will be monitored. Messages relating to or in support of illegal activities will be reported to the authorities. When appropriate for instructional purposes, students may be given access to other electronic communication tools, which will also be monitored.
Vandalism is strictly prohibited. Vandalism is defined as any malicious attempt to access, harm or destroy equipment, programs, and/or data within Pinnacle Classical Academy. This includes, but is not limited to uploading, creating or transmitting computer viruses, hacking, theft and unauthorized intrusion.
Network administrators may review files and communications to maintain system integrity and insure users are accessing the system responsibly. Users should not assume files stored on servers and hard drives of individual computers will always be private.
Personal Electronic Devices
Except as permitted by this policy or otherwise authorized, no student shall, during regular school hours or while participating in school-sponsored curricular functions, turn on or use a personal electronic device EXCEPT in approved locations and times. At a time to be determined by the headmaster, the Technology Specialist, and the school principal, personal electronic devices may be permitted to connect during the school day during approved locations and times for educational purposes only and via the Internet only through Pinnacle Classical Academy’s content-filtered network. Connection to the Internet through a 3G, 4G, or through another content service provider is strictly prohibited.
The Pinnacle Classical Academy Board recognizes that cellular phones and other wireless communication devices have become important tools through which parents communicate with their children. Therefore, students in middle and high schools are permitted to possess such devices on school property so long as the devices are not activated, used, displayed or visible during the instructional day or as otherwise directed by school rules or school personnel. Wireless communication devices include, but are not limited to, cellular phones, electronic devices with Internet capability, paging devices, two-way radios and similar devices.
“Personal electronic devices” include, but are not necessarily limited to, cellular phones, pagers, two-way radios, CD/DVD/MP3 or other audio/video players, electronic games, PDAs, laser pointers, Tablet devices, or any other similar devices not owned, issued or controlled by Pinnacle Classical Academy.
Any device used in violation of this policy may be confiscated by the principal or his/her designee upon his/her discretion and consistent with other Pinnacle Classical Academy Code of Conduct. Similarly, the principal or his/her designee may determine the terms under which the device may be returned to the student or student’s guardian.
School employees may immediately confiscate any wireless communication devices that are on, used, displayed or visible in violation of this policy. Confiscated wireless communication devices will be returned only to the student’s parent or guardian.
Violations of this policy will result in consequences as consistent with the school and the Student Code of Conduct (Rule Violation 22). Aggravating factors may subject a student to more stringent disciplinary consequences, up to and including suspension. Such aggravating factors include, but are not limited to, using wireless communication devices (1) to reproduces images of tests, obtain unauthorized access to school information or assist students in any aspect of their instructional program in a manner that violates any PCA policy, administrative regulation or school rule; (2) to bully or harass other students or individuals; (3) to send illicit text messages; and (4) to take and/or send illicit or inappropriate photographs or videos.
Approved usage of student devices shall apply in the following circumstances:
- When the principal or his/her designee permits a student or students, in case-by-case instances, to turn on or use such electronic device(s) if there is a reasonable need to do so, or
- Emergency conditions exist which seriously threaten one’s safety or property, and such use is the only reasonable means of avoiding such threat, or
- When the principal or his/her designee determines that such use, generally, is otherwise necessary or prudent and is not in violation of any other law or policy
- Teachers and administrators may authorize individual students to use the devices for instructional purposes, provided that they supervise the students during such use.
The distribution of any unauthorized media may result in discipline including but not limited to suspension, criminal charges, and expulsion.
PCA reserves the right to monitor, inspect, copy, and review a personally owned device or file when administration has a reasonable suspicion that a violation has occurred.
Personal electronic devices may be used after regular school hours and at extra-curricular school functions when such use is (1) consistent with other student code of conduct policies, (2) does not or is not likely to disrupt any school function or operation, and (3) has not otherwise been prohibited by the principal or his/her designee.
In accordance with NC Board Policy 4342, Student Searches, a student’s wireless communication device and its contents, including, but not limited to, text messages and digital photos/videos, may be searched whenever a school official has reason to believe the search will provide evidence that the student has violated or is violating a law or a school rule. The scope of such searches must be reasonably related to the objectives of the search and not excessively intrusive in light of the nature of the suspected infraction.
Students are personally and solely responsible for the security of their wireless communication and personal electronic devices. PCA is not responsible for the theft, loss, or damage of a cellular phone or other personal electronic devices. The student retains all responsibility for the security, safety, connectivity maintenance, damage, and troubleshooting of their own personal electronic device(s).
The use of technology resources inside Pinnacle Classical Academy is a privilege, not a right. Inappropriate or unethical use or failure to adhere to these Internet Usage Guidelines or the Student Code of Conduct may include, but are not limited to, limitation/curtailment/suspension/revocation or cancellation of user privileges or technology resources and appropriate legal action.