Holicong Middle School

Consent for Your Child to Participate in Online Collaborations - Including Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts, Discussion Boards

Online Collaborations Consent Form.pdf

The staff at Holicong Middle School feels that proper use of the Internet and its resources is an essential component of the learning process. Our mission statement states that “integrating technology is recognized as essential to educational growth” and “the use of technology is a driving force in education and communication.” In addition, the Central Bucks School District goals include “Implementing distance learning, online courses, and network based collaboration tools for students and staff.”

In order to fulfill these mission statements and effectively integrate the 21st century technologies that students are using, we are piloting the use of online discussion boards, social bookmarking, podcasts, learning networks, wikis, and blogs as educational tools. The ability to use the Internet as a communication and learning tool is an essential life skill that all students should possess in the 21st century. As a result, we selected the use of discussion boards, social bookmarking, podcasts, learning networks, wikis, and blogs for the following reasons:

  • Discussion boards, social bookmarking, podcasts, learning networks, wikis, and blogs are often used in college courses and employment for the dissemination of information and assignments.
  • Participation allows students to collaborate, communication, create, and contextualize learning with their classmates and teachers in an authentic and respectful way.
  • Creating, collaborating, and communicating online, instead of on paper, allows students to express their thoughts and ideas, while having ready access to those of other students.
  • Online forums serve as powerful statements of students' academic progress, analytical thinking, and communication skills. They encourage students to engage in academic discourse in rigorous and relevant ways.
  • Teacher monitoring of online learning serves to model appropriate and safe online behavior and encourages the academic implementation of online mediums.

The staff at Holicong is committed to providing a safe learning environment for all students. The Internet services used are kid-friendly sites. No personal information about students is disseminated or accessible by those outside the learning community. All services used at Holicong Middle School follow the safety guidelines outlined in the Children’s Online Privacy Protect Act (COPPA - http://www.coppa.org/) and student participation is closely monitored by the assigning teacher. The teacher has also shared rules on acceptable use with his/her class. Parents may gain access to these sites by contacting the teacher for specific login information.

Since the use of discussion boards, social bookmarking, podcasts, learning networks, wikis, and blogs is a way of differentiating instruction, there is always an alternative assignment for students/parents who wish not to participate in the online activity. To ensure that every student that participates in these online discussions does so with the consent of their parents, we ask that you sign this form giving or declining your consent.

If you have questions about the specific sites that are being used in Online Connections, please contact Mrs. Dorman.