Setting up Your Classroom:
Creating an Acceptable Use Policy
Before students access the Internet, school administrators, teachers, media specialists, and parents need to develop a formal set of usage guidelines. Such guidelines are called "Acceptable Internet Use Policies," or AUPs. An AUP outlines the terms and conditions of Internet use, access privileges, and rules of online behavior. It is signed by students, parents, and teachers.
A good AUP usually includes, but is not limited to, the following components:
- a description of the instructional philosophies and strategies to be supported by Internet access;
- a statement of the educational uses and advantages of the Internet to your school or division;
- a code of conduct governing behavior on the Internet;
- the consequences of violating the AUP;
- a description of what constitutes acceptable and unacceptable use of the Internet;
- a statement reminding users that Internet access and the use of computer networks is a privilege;
- a statement that the AUP is in compliance with state and national telecommunication rules and regulations; and
- a signature form on which teachers, parents, and students can indicate their intent to abide by the AUP.
Before drafting an AUP for your school, district, or classroom, have a look at the following resources and examples from schools around the country. Feel free to send us your school AUP to add to our list.
Houston Independent School District Internet Permission Form
Department of Education Access Network Policy
For more information about setting up a technology-infused
classroom, read Peggy Maslow's article, "Setting
Up Clear Expectations" from the Teachers Network's
To" online resources for teachers.