Trouble Is Only A Mouse Click Away
Q.What is the employee technology use policy?
Inappropriate use of computers and the Internet is a growing problem in the workplace, and schools are no exception. Most teachers will never have problems with the way they use computers at work and will reap only the benefits of technology in the classroom.
However, it is important that you know what the potential consequences are if you inappropriately use a computer while at school. It is no exaggeration to say that the risks include dismissal from your job, loss of your teaching credential, and even conviction of a criminal offense and a prison sentence.
Although there are no hard and fast rules as to what constitutes inappropriate use of the computer in a school setting, it is clear that chat rooms, e-mail and visits to Internet sites with content of a sexual nature or related to weapons or violent behavior are taboo subjects.
Employees claim no constitutional right to privacy or first amendment rights to free speech when it comes to inappropriate use of a computer during work time. The school district owns the computers and school administrators have a right to regulate their use by employees.
Information cannot be deleted by simply shutting down the computer. The only way to prevent detection of the content stored on the computer is by physically removing and destroying the hard drive.
Computer logs can be created that show the date and time an Internet site was visited so districts can determine whether teachers accessed material when students could have been present.
Even unsuccessful attempts to visit sites blocked by the District's filtering system are indelibly recorded.
Factors Determining Punishment
- Was the improper use during class time or the work day?
- Did students actually view any objectionable material?
- Was there personal contact with students via email?
- What was the frequency of the inappropriate computer use?
Employee Use of Technology
The Governing Board recognizes that technology can enhance employee performance by improving access to, and exchange of information; offering effective tools to assist in providing a quality instructional program; and facilitating operations. The Board expects all employees to learn to use the available electronic resources that will assist them in their jobs. As needed, staff shall receive training in the appropriate use of these resources.
Employees shall be responsible for the appropriate use of technology and shall use the District's electronic resources for purposes related to their employment. Employees are allowed to conduct electronic network-based activities which are work-related. Personal activities will be limited and will in no way interfere with the educational/professional computer time and use for which hardware and software are intended. Such use is a privilege, which may be revoked at any time.
Computer files and communications over electronic networks, including e-mail and voice mail, are not private. This technology should not transmit confidential information about students, employees, or District business.
To ensure proper use, the Superintendent/designee may monitor the District's technological resources, including e-mail and voice mail systems, at any time without advance notice or consent. If passwords are used, they must be known to the Superintendent/designee so that he/she may have system access when the employee is absent.
The Superintendent/designee shall establish administrative regulations, which outline employee obligations and responsibilities related to the use of technology. Employees who fail to abide by these regulations shall be subject to disciplinary action, revocation of the user account and legal action as appropriate.
The Superintendent/designee may establish guidelines and limits on the use of technological resources. He/she shall ensure that all employees using these resources receive copies of related policies, regulations and guidelines. Employees shall be asked to acknowledge in writing that they have read and understood these policies, regulations and guidelines.
In the event that the use of an electronic resources affect the working conditions of one or more employees, the Superintendent/ designee shall notify the employees' exclusive representative.
11600-11609 - Education Technology Grant Program Act 1996.
51870-51884 -The Morgan-Far - Quackenbush Education Technology Act of 1992.
3543.1 - Rights of employee organizations.
632 - Eavesdropping on or recording conditional communications.
United States Code
Title 20 - 6801-7005 -Technology for Education Act of 1994
CDE Publications - K-12 Network Technology Planning guide: Building the Future, 1994.
CDE Program Advisories - 1223.94 - Acceptable Use of Electronic Information Resources