Students in Plymouth schools will notice a few changes to their technology use policy when they return to school in August.
During Tuesday night’s Plymouth School Board meeting, the Responsible Use Policy was reviewed. The policy is designed to protect the school corporation from liability in the instance their technology is used for harmful or illegal activities and was developed with the help of administrators and the technology department.
Allie Holland is an instructional coach with the school corporation. She says students will be given PDF files of their textbooks if they misuse equipment.
“We thought that we needed something that would put responsibility back on the student,” says Holland. “Not necessarily on the teacher to kind of figure out what that student is going to do when they don’t have their computer, but more on the student and reflecting on their behaviors.”
Changes to the way Plymouth Schools charge for damages will be the most noticeable, including specific charges for smaller costs. Certain language was being used by students to argue costs if the damage did not occur at school.
The Responsible Use Policy provides incentives through a Tier system of internet access. Students who misuse the equipment will have internet access restricted, whereas students who are considered more responsible will be given additional privileges.
Holland says there will be measures that hopefully cut down on undesirable student behavior.
“The goal is that they just take responsibility for their actions and they realize that what they do online lasts longer than that split second of what they did online,” says Holland.
Because the RUP, as it’s called, is part of the student handbook, the Plymouth School Board did not feel it necessary to take action to approve the changes.
Administrators made note during last night’s meeting of recovering Superintendent Dan Tyree – who was placed in the hospital following kidney transplant surgery. Plymouth Schools have reportedly seen an outpouring of support in his absence.