St Conleth’s Policy on the Appropriate Use of Technology

St Conleth’s Policy on the Appropriate Use of Technology
(Electronic Devices and ICT Acceptable Use Policy)

Introduction

St Conleth’s College accepts that the use of technology and electronic equipment is increasingly part of school life and that both students and staff in St. Conleth’s College use such equipment on a day-to-day basis.

St. Conleth’s provides access to networked computers to support students’ educational needs.  For the most part, this equipment is the property of the school, though in some cases it may belong to individuals who are permitted to use such equipment on the school premises or at home.

For the purpose of this document, technology/electronic equipment includes, any mobile computing devices e.g. laptops, PC tablets, cameras, mobile phones, sound and or video equipment and any device which may be used to record, store and/or transmit digital or electronic files, pictures or sound.

The purpose of this policy is to define the acceptable use of IT and electronic equipment (both school property and personal property) within the school.  This policy is an extension of the School Rules, covering specifically the use of the St. Conleth’s College network and any computer equipment connected to it.

School Computer Facilities

Overview

St Conleth’s College allows all students access to our computer network, enabling them to use standard applications (word processing, spreadsheet, database etc) as well as online facilities such as the Internet and electronic mail. Each student is issued with a username, password and an e-mail address at the start of his/ her school career.

Access to the school computer network is a privilege and it is each student’s responsibility to use the network for educational purposes, subject research, project work and school business at the direction and discretion of the teachers. Students are encouraged to make use of IT facilities in support of their studies in all subjects, including the writing up of coursework assignments.

Subject to the specific rules below, the use of technology within St. Conleth’s or on school trips, or in any way which affects life in St. Conleth’s, is acceptable only when the general health and welfare of others is not put at risk.  At no time is it acceptable to use any technology for the purposes of bullying, intimidation or hurting others.

NOTE

It is important to note that the St. Conleth’s College provides a network environment in which students can assume that their legitimate use of computers and the data that they store are secure against interference by other users. However, students should not assume that their activities are completely private.

Authority has been delegated to St Conleth’s IT Department to determine appropriate use and to monitor user accounts and fileserver space as judged necessary. Hence, records of usage, files that have been stored, and e-mail messages that have been sent or received may be scrutinised by the members of staff responsible for management of the network either a) during routine system maintenance, or b) if there is reason to suspect misuse of the network.

Rules governing the use of computers

    1. General Conduct and Use

      • No student is allowed to use the computer room unsupervised (i.e. without a teacher present)
      • Only one student should be seated and working at a computer at any one time.
      • Students should conduct themselves properly and show consideration for others
      • No food or drink may be consumed whilst using ICT Equipment.
      • Any malfunction of equipment or damage to computers, furniture or fittings should be reported to a member of the St Conleth’s ICT Department without delay.
      • Before leaving a computer, students must always log off the network and check that the logging off procedure is complete.
      • Students using the computer room must leave the computer rooms in good time to arrive punctually for their next timetabled lesson
      • Chairs should be placed tidily in the room before leaving.
    2. Using the Network

      • When logging on to the network, a student must always use his/her own user identification and password.
      • If a student forgets or loses his/her logon password, he/she is obliged to immediately acquire a new one from a member of the IT team
      • Students must never divulge their passwords to other students or to users of computers outside the School. Any student who suspects that this has happened accidentally should change his password without delay.
      • Students must never log on to the network with another user’s account or log on as a system administrator.  Such action will be treated as a serious offence, as will any attempt to interfere with data stored on the network by another user. These activities are in fact illegal.
      • The St Conleth’s network and/or other networks connected to the Internet must not be vandalised. This includes tampering physically with the equipment, altering the settings, modifying or destroying data, installing software, hacking into unauthorised areas, or uploading or creating computer viruses or otherwise.
      • It is strictly forbidden to attempt to share drives, folders or files across the network.
      • Students must not purchase goods or services via the school computer network.
      • Students must not use computers to send offensive, indecent, abusive, discriminatory, racist or harassing material to others. Harassment includes, but is not limited to, the sending of unwanted e-mail.
      • Students must not access or try to access inappropriate sites or try to circumvent the school filtering system
      • Students must not use school computers for any form of illegal activity, including software and music piracy
      • It is a breach of school rules and the State Examinations Commission to pass off another’s work as your own. This prohibition extends to information accessed electronically as it does to that obtained in other ways.
      • Students must comply with the restrictions placed on certain kinds of usage; including the playing of online games which is strictly prohibited.

      NB. Students using the computer room in class must have the permission of their teacher to print material.

Using the Internet and E-mail

The Internet represents an important learning resource to search for information related to school subjects or school projects and its use is encouraged. Each student in the School has access to the Internet and e-mail account.  Students are given training in the effective use of the Internet as a research tool.

The School’s Internet access for laptops is via the HEAnet (Broadband for schools) a company that has been involved with IT in education for many years. The advantage of HEAnet is that it seeks to deny access to web sites known to contain offensive or inappropriate material.

All other Internet access via the school network is filtered and monitored by the schools Sonicwall.  Both filters are continually updated, though there can be no absolute guarantee that unsuitable material is never accessible to users.

E-mail

All senior students have a St. Conleth’s e-mail account.  In school, students may use their college e-mail account only and none other. Students who access their school e-mail outside of the school must abide by the AUP rules for use of the school’s e-mail facilities.  A student must never use the school’s e-mail facility to bring the school into disrepute or send e-mails which are offensive, indecent, abusive, discriminatory, or racist

The use of web-based e-mail (e.g. Hotmail, Yahoo mail etc) is prohibited.  Students should be aware of St. Conleth’s responsibility to report inappropriate activity to the relevant authorities. It is also important to note that thoughtless use of e-mail and the Internet may jeopardise a student’s personal safety either in school or outside school.

Internet Chat

  • Students may not create, access or use chat rooms
  • Students may not create, access or use instant messenger (IM) programs
  • Students may not create, access guestbooks, message boards or bulletin boards
  • Students may not create, access or contribute to a Web Log (Blogging)

E- Mail and Personal Safety

Students should:

  • Never arrange a meeting in person with anyone they have “met” or only communicated with by computer, without prior parental approval.
  • Not respond to messages or bulletin board items that are indecent, suggestive, belligerent, discriminatory, threatening, or which make the student feel uncomfortable or unsafe in any way. If such a message is encountered the student should report it to the IT team, his/her form teacher and parents.
  • Be aware that any person they “meet” or communicate with online may pretend to be someone else.
  • Remember that anything they read online may not be accurate.
  • Ignore offers that involve either financial transactions or personal meetings.
  • Not disclose any personal details, such as their home address or telephone number, across the Internet.

Mobile Devices (including laptops)

Overview

The number of mobile devices that may or may not be connected to the School network is increasing dramatically. For the purposes of communicating over the School network a mobile device will require an IP address. This is picked up automatically from the server.

Rules (These rules apply to all Mobile Devices):

  • Students may only connect a device to the College Network Student Wifi.
  • Students may only attach a mobile device using wireless networking
  • Only mobile devices with up-to-date anti-virus software where deemed necessary ie Windows laptops may be connected to the College Network and students should ensure that their devices are properly protected from viruses.
  • Under no circumstances should computers, printers or other devices be detached from the network to make way for a mobile device.
  • No mobile device may be plugged directly into any network point, switch, hub or router.
  • The sharing of mobile device local drives, folders or files across the network is strictly forbidden.
  • No servers of any description should be attached to the network.
  • Students are responsible for the material that exists on or is accessed via their mobile device. The ICT Department are empowered to scrutinise, and if necessary retain for further investigation, any mobile device which is or has been attached to the network.
  • Conleth’s College cannot accept responsibility for any damage, howsoever caused, to personal mobile devices or their contents (files, folders etc.).
  • All the above rules of usage for Internet access and computer usage continue to apply.
  • It is the responsibility of the owner to ensure that he has a licence for all software installed on his/her mobile device.
  • No software should be run on a mobile device during lessons which is not appropriate to that lesson.

Sanctions For Misuse of Computer Facilities

Misuse of the computer facilities, the internet and/or mail facilities will result in disciplinary action, withdrawal of access privileges and in extreme cases suspension or expulsion.
Parents will be informed when serious breaches of the Acceptable Use Policy have occurred. The school also reserves the right to report any illegal activities to the appropriate authorities.

NOTE:  This policy document is subject to ongoing review

September 2017