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Nancy, Your presumptions are not correct. 1. Properly designed research assignments do not hinge on whether or not a single site is blocked. 2. To suggest making a white list indicates begs one to flame back. I will not. 3. My statements were generalities that extend beyond my district. My experience in teaching teachers at the graduate level tends to support this. 4. Your statement about district librarians has a few issues as well: a. Not all districts have librarians with MLS degrees. b. School librarian certification is not necessarily the same as having an MLS. It is not in Illinois c. Many schools either have not librarian at all, or less than one per school. Our district went from 2 librarians for 3 schools to 1 librarian for all with not library aids at all. Next year it may eliminate the single librarian as well. This, of course, is due to Illinois's less than honest state politicians. d. Your statement "Anyone who has received a degree in library science has top notch skills in assessing media literacy - skills that would presumably exceed those of someone with an Ed.D." begs me to flame back, but I will not. I will say, however, that one cannot assume anything on one degree alone. As you well know, every profession has a range of cognitive abilities. To assume that everyone with a particular degree has "top notch" skills in any particular area of that profession is not realistic. One thing that I believe is missing from this discussion is that content filters are tools. When I first implemented Internet access at Somonauk I was one of the few districts that put a content filter in place. The first one I had (called “Instant Internet”) tracked where students went and allowed me to enter a block a list. It supplied no other lists. In the early days this was enough. At the time I felt that tracking where students went was more of an incentive to encourage proper use than trying to block everything. I felt that way back then and every year since. It was not long before the number and type of inappropriate sites has grown by several magnitudes, making entering my own block sites impossible. I found other “smut” lists from other tech directors using the same appliance server and uploaded them. Eventually I switched to BorderManager and then to Barracuda. Each time, however, I made sure that I still had the capability to track usage, because this was more effective than hoping the filter will block all that is inappropriate. Occasionally, when we do find a student who has violated the rules, the focus of discipline is that the student, not the school, should be keeping himself/herself out of such sites. Our focus at Somonauk is that it is the individual’s responsibility (teacher, staff, and students) to use the Internet appropriately. Content filters are tools that are to keep faculty, staff and students from accidentally bumping into sites that are inappropriate. It is not about control. It is about what is best for our students. Last, the use of rules concerning Internet and network use are real world experience for students. I know of many instances in which network violations result in immediate ================= Nancy Willard <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote... > From: Jim Beal <email@example.com> > > I do not think the issue is intentional on teachers' part, rather > unintentional. I can pull out any copy Smithsonian Air and Space magazine > a be 99.99% sure it is not material that would be a CIPA (or common sense) > violation line. > > The question then, is why would I do this anyway? I would I just introduce > material without having first review for instructional use/content? The > same holds true for websites. > > It is a matter of professionalism. If you are a professional, you go into > class prepared and do not need emergency filter exceptions. I agree with Art's point. The other reason for letting teachers override the filter is to ensure that student research is not hampered. Of course, students are more likely to know how to engage in an unauthorized bypass. But Mr. Beal, your comments bring up another point. You presume to think that if a teacher or student can access a site, that is if the site is not blocked by the filter, it is a credible site. Nothing could be further from the truth. Given your concerns for lack of professionalism of your teachers and their inability to ascertain the credibility of material online without your oversight, perhaps you should undertake the development of a white-list of Mr. Beal's Approved Credible Sites and then require all teachers and students to obtain your permission to look at anything else online. The other question is whether your district has fired all of its librarians. Anyone who has received a degree in library science has top notch skills in assessing media literacy - skills that would presumably exceed those of someone with an Ed.D. The advantage of having all school librarians have the authority to override the filter is that they are in a much better position to mentor the other teachers on these site credibility issues than you are. Through their mentoring, the skills of all teachers, and then the students, will be increased. I agree with Paula's concerns that providing wide override authority could result in unintended negative consequences. These include teachers using the override to access porn, engage in personal online activities, download material in a manner that causes bandwidth problems, and jeopardize security because they allow students to gain the override password. I think these concerns can be minimized by careful planning, clear standards, professional development, periodic review of override activity to identify inappropriate use of overrides, and appropriate consequences. Also, at this point in time, not all teachers are likely to require override authority. Only those that are engaging in instructional activities using the Internet need such authority. Nancy -- Nancy Willard, M.S., J.D. Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use http://csriu.org firstname.lastname@example.org --- Edtech Archives, posting guidelines and other information are at: http://www.h-net.msu.edu/~edweb Please include your name, email address, and school or professional affiliation in each posting. To unsubscribe send the following command to: LISTSERV@H-NET.MSU.EDU SIGNOFF EDTECH