Internet Safety in District 58
District 58 students frequently access the Internet to enhance their learning. District 58 values safe student Internet use and incorporates digital citizenship lessons to teach students how to responsibly navigate the Internet.
Policies and Regulations
Guided by Board Policy 6111 and Administrative Regulation 6111, District 58 aims to ensure all students have safe access to the Internet. Both of these documents are printed in their entirety in the Schools of 58 Parent Handbook. As part of its digital citizenship curriculum, District 58 teaches students appropriate Internet behavior and expectations. During registration, all students and parents read and sign the District’s 1:1 student agreement, which outlines these expectations.
The District also secures its student and staff Internet devices with technology protection filters that adhere to the Children’s Internet Protection Act’s regulations. Finally, students may access the Internet only with teacher permission and a defined purpose. Network and school personnel may review files and communications to ensure all District 58 devices are being used responsibly.
District 58 encourages families to monitor their child’s Internet access at home, including social media and gaming, and to have open conversations with their children about Internet safety. Below you will read about the technical restrictions and filtering that are in place, but ultimately no filter is perfect and we need to help our students learn to make good decisions and have a safe and structured place to learn to navigate the Internet.
Parents with questions regarding the District’s Internet safety procedures are welcome to contact their building principal or the Technology Department at 630-719-2768.
All devices connected to the District 58 network have content filtered via an on premise network security appliance. This will continue to be our primary means of filtering student devices when at school. This appliance does not provide any content filtering when the devices are off-site or connected to a different network. In an effort to offer additional content filtering for our students when their District 58 devices are connected to external networks, District 58 will be piloting a new remote proxy filter on 1:1 iPads for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. District 58 Chromebooks will continue to be filtered regardless of location using the same remote proxy filter we are piloting with the 1:1 iPads. This means that all Internet traffic on student devices is monitored and logged remotely, regardless of location.
Please realize that no content filter is perfect. At times, content filters will block sites that we do not want to be blocked and unfortunately, on occasion, will allow sites that should be blocked. Even with this filter enabled, if you connect your child’s 1:1 device to your home network (or any other network) you must closely monitor the use of that device. We recommend having students use their iPads in central locations in proximity to adult supervision. This is a best practice with or without a content filter when a child is using an Internet-connected device.
YouTube access is restricted to content approved by either YouTube’s automated system or videos that have been approved by our teachers. With the new remote proxy filter we are piloting, this is true regardless of device location or network connection.
Because most content filtering is done by blocking entire domains, filtering search engine traffic is more complex. Google, Yahoo and Bing all offer a more restricted version of search results typically called Safe Search. This is not a uniform standard, and what traffic is allowed is set by each individual company’s software. However, we are able to force Safe Search on all three major search engines, regardless of device location, using the remote proxy filter. In addition, we use the filter to attempt to block additional search engines that do not have a Safe Search that we can configure.
Student Email and Google Drive
All District 58 students have an email account, but various restrictions are put in place. For students in grades K-3, the Mail and Gmail Apps are blocked from their iPads. For students in Grades K-6, they are only able to email other dg58.org email addresses. All student email accounts are monitored by a 3rd party service that scans all inbound and outbound emails along with Google Drive files for a variety of student safety issues. If any issues are detected, District 58 administrators are promptly alerted.
iPads – AirDrop
AirDrop is a wireless technology protocol that Apple uses for sharing files between Apple devices based on proximity. Many of our teachers use this tool on a daily basis to quickly get files to student iPads as a part of their workflow in the classroom. When students are issued their iPads, AirDrop is set to “Receiving Off” by default. This setting can remain off, and teachers are still able to share files via an educational tool they use called Apple Classroom. However, some students may adjust this setting to one of the other settings, “Contacts Only” or “Everyone”. Please be aware that if your child changes the setting to “Everyone” and they use their iPad in public areas, it is possible that anyone with an Apple Device could use AirDrop to send files (such as images) to their device. While this may not be a common occurrence, it is a feature to be aware of when your child is using any Apple Device in a public space and they have their AirDrop set to “Everyone”. If you would like to check the AirDrop setting on your child’s iPad, you can navigate to “Settings” -> “General” -> “AirDrop”.