Prompted by parent and educator feedback, BVSD has taken two big steps to reduce digital distractions in the classroom and keep technology use focused on learning: a new student cell phone policy and the rollout of the GoGuardian software at all schools this year.
New Cell Phone Policy
BVSD’s Student Use of Cell Phones and Other Personal Technology Devices regulation (JICJ-R) was presented to the Board of Education during their Regular Meeting on May 9. It requires elementary and middle school students to keep their devices turned off and stowed away during the entire school day and high schoolers must do the same during class, unless a teacher or employee specifically allows them to use the device. Students who violate the regulation may have their device confiscated temporarily.
As you can imagine there has been a lot of conversation around this topic. Educators and school administrators felt strongly that the devices still be available for specific lessons or to take notes on homework assignments. Meanwhile, parents shared that it is important for them to be able to communicate to their children during an emergency. This policy aims to meet all of those needs, while keeping students focused on their education.
Last school year, 12 schools piloted the GoGuardian software which serves dual purposes. The first is the classroom management tool. This function allows teachers to monitor students’ screens from their own as well as give customized support to students. The second tool allows 24 hour filtering on BVSD devices and/or if a student is logged into their BVSD account on the Google Chrome browser. This product works as an additional web filter to block inappropriate sites when students are logged into their BVSD accounts on BVSD chromebooks.
If you would like more information regarding this software, as well as information to opt your student out of the filtering tool, see this parent information letter and fact sheet that were emailed out at the start of school to the new schools and pilot schools last year.
MORE INFORMATION: Go Guardian Information Sheet