The "Pupil Internet Use Agreement" must be signed by the parent(s) or guardian(s) of every pupil as part of each child's enrolment process. At some point in their P5-P7 years, pupils will go over the terms of the agreement in class and also be asked to sign the agreement to ensure they have ownership of the process. By signing the 'Agreement', parents and pupils are guaranteeing, as far as is possible, the safe and acceptable use of the Council's network and its associated Internet access. In schools, the use of the Internet, and associated electronic communications, is now seen to be an integral part of daily learning for pupils. It is a beneficial tool made widely available in order to enhance and promote positive learning experiences.
Schools do as much as possible to teach children about how to use the Internet safely and responsibility as well as what to do should they encounter content or communications which they know to be inappropriate. Ultimately, the responsibility for the acceptable use of the Internet lies with the user - inside and outside of school; inside and outside of the home. Ultimately, the safe and responsibility use of the Internet by children lies with ALL the adults in their lives - inside and outside of school; inside and outside of the home.
In school, computer use (including access to the Internet) is provided through monitoring and filtering systems put in place by Scottish Borders Council. Pupils are also supervised by school staff and, where possible, the websites which they are directed to are vetted by teachers or accessed through creditable sources.
The "always on" nature of the Internet makes its content readily available even when adults are not around to supervise. Mobile devices, e.g. Smartphones, iPods, games consoles etc. make Internet content readily available anywhere, anytime and ALL adults must make every effort to monitor children's Internet use. Children must also be aware of the responsibilities they have for their own safe, appropriate use of the Internet.
No computer monitoring or filtering system is 100% effective. No school or home can, or would want to, supervise every child constantly - it removes the opportunities for them to become independent. However, the consequences for using the Internet and electronic communications inappropriately, unwittingly or illegally are well documented and pupils must know the impact that their, or someone else's, improper use may have on a) themselves and b) other people.
The school's "Pupil Internet Use Agreement" acknowledges the major benefits which the Internet, and associated electronic communications, brings to pupils' learning. The 'Agreement' aims to ensure that the safe practices and appropriate use of the Internet, and its resources, continue to enhance the learning experiences of all our pupils. Pupils who knowingly breach the 'Agreement' and who deliberately put their own safety, or that of others, at risk will have their computer use investigated by the school and, if necessary Scottish Borders Council, and may have their access to computer resources in the school limited or, ultimately, removed.