3000 - Educational Program

3221 Student Use of Personal Devices for Instructional Purposes


The Pender County School District recognizes that students increasingly have access to and are using personal technology devices for many purposes, including educational purposes.

Personal technology devices are not a substitute for district provided technology resources, and when available, students shall use district provided technology resources. However, students who have received approval to use personal technology devices for instructional purposes by the superintendent and building principal must comply with this policy, policy 3220 (Technology in the Educational Program), policy 3225-4312-7320 (Technology Responsible Use), and policy 3226/4205 (Internet Safety), policy 4300 (Student Behavior Policies), policy 4310 (Integrity & Civility), and policy 4318 (Use of Wireless Communication Devices). 

No student shall be penalized in any fashion for failure to own or have access to personal electronic devices.

I. Definitions

a. District Networks – Include both wired and wireless networks maintained by the district.

b. Personal Technology Devices – includes all existing and emerging technology devices that can take photographs; record audio or video; input text; upload and download media; and transmit or receive messages or images. Personal technology devices include, but are not limited to, the following: iPods; iPads; Nooks; Kindles; tablets; laptops; personal digital assistants (PDAs); cell phones; and smartphones (BlackBerry, iPhone, or Android).

c. Educational Purposes -- includes classroom activities, career development, communication with experts, in-class assignments and homework.

II. Acceptable Use

a. Possession or use of any personal technology device on district property is a privilege, and students who fail to abide by Board policies may forfeit this privilege.

b. When approved by the building principal, students will be allowed to use personal technology devices for instructional purposes. Each building administrator, under the direction of the superintendent or designee, shall determine the appropriate areas of the school where students may use personal technology devices and the extent to which such devices will be incorporated into the classroom curriculum.

c. Possession or use of personal technology devices must not in any way disrupt the educational process in the school district, endanger the health or safety of the student or any other person in the district, invade the rights of others at school or involve illegal or prohibited conduct.

d. All use of personal technology devices during the school day shall be for appropriate educational and instructional purposes only and shall be consistent with the educational objectives of the district. Personal use of personal technology devices is prohibited in accordance with policy 4318 (Use of Wireless Communication Devices). , 

e. Students using personal technology devices must follow the same rules that apply to the use of district-provided technology as set forth in policy 3225-4312-7320 (Technology Responsible Use). 

f. While using personal technology devices, students must adhere to the Student Code of Conduct and all applicable Board policies, including, but not limited to, policy 4300 (Student Behavior), policy 4310 (Integrity and Civility), policy 4315 (Disruptive Behavior), policy 4318 (Use of Wireless Communication Devices), policy 4328 (Gang-Related Activity), policy 4331 (Assaults, Threats and Harassment), policy 4333 (Weapons, Bomb Threats, Terrorist Threats and Clear Threats to Safety), policy 4335 (Criminal Behavior), policy 1710/402107230 (Prohibition Against Discrimination, Harassment, and Bullying), and policy 3225-4312-7320 (Technology Responsible Use)

g. Students must be aware of appropriateness of communications when using district or personal technology devices. Inappropriate communication, including vulgar, obscene, profane, or lewd language, is prohibited in any public messages, private messages, and material posted online by students.

h. Failure to abide by this policy shall subject the student to disciplinary action under the Code of Student Conduct.

III. Limitations/Prohibitions

a. All students shall review this policy and associated technology guidelines before utilizing any school and/or personal technology devices. All students and their parents/guardians shall sign and submit the attached permission form acknowledging their understanding of this policy. Failure to sign and submit the form or to abide by the provisions of this policy will result in the loss of privileges under this policy.

b. Students may only use approved devices under this policy, as described above. Examples of prohibited devices under this policy include, but are not limited to, gaming devices or consoles, laser pointers, modems or routers, and televisions.

c. The Board expressly prohibits use of personal technology devices in locker rooms and restrooms. No school official may adopt or implement a rule or practice in conflict with this prohibition.

d. In accordance with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA), personally owned devices used in school are not permitted to connect to the Internet through a 3G, 4G, or other content service provider’s network, or through any physical network jack. Student devices with a data plan through the student's or parent's/guardian's mobile provider must have the external network turned off when on school premises during the school day. Personal technology devices must access the internet via the District’s content-filtered wireless network.

e. Except as expressly permitted by a teacher or administrator for an instructional purpose, students are not permitted to use any electronic device, personal or otherwise, to record audio or video media or take pictures of any student, parent or school employee. 

f. Students are prohibited from posting any pictures, videos, or audio recordings of others taken without permission, including posting on any social media platform (Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, etc.). Any violation may result in discipline under the Student Code of Conduct. 

g. Students must not engage in cyber-bullying as defined under state law, and may not otherwise utilize any technology to harass, threaten, demean, humiliate, intimidate, embarrass, or annoy classmates or others in their community.

h. Personal technology devices will not have access to network resources or hardware, including printers.

i. Students may not create wireless “hot spots” using personal technology devices.

j. Students may not use another person’s device, account, or password. Students may not delete or in any way alter files belonging to another person.

IV. School / District Reservation of Rights

a. Use of personal technology devices in Pender County Schools is a privilege, not a right. The District reserves the right to restrict and/or prohibit student use of district owned technologies and personal technology devices on school property or at school-sponsored events.

b. Personal technology devices are not a substitute for district provided technology resources. When available, students will use district-provided technology resources before personal technology devices.

c. Students who bring personal technology devices to school do so at their own risk. Pender County Schools shall not be liable for the loss, damage, misuse, or theft of any personally owned device brought on school property.

d. Approved personal technology devices are subject to reasonable searches and seizures as provided in policy 4342 (Student Searches) and policy 4318 (Use of Wireless Communication Devices). 

e. Pender County Schools reserves the right to seize and search a personally owned device when a teacher or administrator reasonably suspects that a search will disclose evidence of a violation of the law, the Student Code of Conduct or other Board policy.

V. Authorization Form

All students who receive approval to use a personal technology device within Pender County Schools must, along with a parent/guardian, sign and submit the attached permission form acknowledging their understanding of this policy and their acceptance of its provisions before using any personal technology device within Pender County Schools.

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Tuesday, 10 March 2020
Last Updated: