RPSB restricting social media sites for students - KALB-TV News Channel 5 & CBS 2

RPSB restricting social media sites for students

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RAPIDES PARISH, La. (KALB News Channel 5) -- Rapides Parish School Board has enforced some strict social media policies to keep students safe and focused on their school work. But just how effective are those policies? 

News Channel 5's Noelle Bellow talked with the school board who revealed that Facebook and Twitter are blocked from all campus computers and wi-fi. Which is a decision many agree with. 

Mom Lauren Johnson said, "I do think there needs to be some monitoring from somewhere and if its not happening in the home, then it needs to be in the school."

Blake Dodge agrees, "I think it should be restricted because its definitely a distraction for students during class hours, instead of paying attention to lessons and the teachers."

However, Technology Director at RPSB Rebekah Beck revealed,  that some schools allow students to bring their own electronics. "Some schools are BYOD– bring your own device, so they allow students to bring in lap tops, IPads whatever they’re comfortable with," said Beck. 

That's a privilege that some say opens up a window to those restricted sites, and the act of cyber bullying. 

Dodge said, "they can restrict the wi-fi, but everyone’s smart phone has data access through that, and they can definitely go around it and use it if they wanted to. It's going to happen no matter what, because even when students aren't at school and they’re on their own time using social media, they’re going to find that opportunity to bully someone."

An act that the school board hopes to prevent by educating the students and their parents. 

"What we try to do is make sure parents are aware of what to look for, what teachers can look for. We do a lot of education for our students on cyber bullying, how to be proper digital citizens, what is proper netiquette – network etiquette," said Beck. "There's so much information out there on the internet, and to be able to monitor that is a very difficult task, but we try very hard to make sure our students are safe within our school system."

Anyone interested in learning more about the ways to prevent cyber bullying, Beck suggests going to stopcyberbullying.org

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