Changes to Facebook access.

school facebook keyboardPrevious Policy:  
Facebook was blocked for all users throughout the entire day.  If a staff member wanted access, they would make the request to their supervisor, who would then send the request to the director of technology, who would open access for the specific individual.

New Policy: 

We are making two changes…

1) Access to Facebook will be opened outside of school hours.
Facebook will continue to be blocked on the district’s wired network (desktop computers) as well as the district wireless laptop carts that are used by students, but only Monday thru Friday 7:30am to 4pm.  Outside of these times, access to Facebook will be open for all users.

2) Access to Facebook will be opened for staff only on the WDM-STAFF wireless network.  This wireless network is specifically used by staff and administrators only.

Does this mean that students can access Facebook during school time?  
No, it will be blocked during school hours on the networks that are used by students.

Why the change?

1) Facebook is predominantly a social site, however, its usage has grown as a communication tool.  For example, all of our schools as well as the district are now using Facebook as a communication tool with the broader community.

2) The number of requests to open up access far outweigh the concerns to have it blocked.

3) We are offering classes to parents and community members regarding Facebook.  These classes are taught during the evenings and weekends.
4) Commonly used websites, such as the Des Moines Register, have integrated Facebook into their site.  If you want read the comments and/or participate in the dialogue, you must have access to Facebook.
Q. What about other social media sites – are they impacted by this change?
Twitter was already completely open to staff and students.
Pinterest was already completely open to staff and students.
YouTube was also already completely open to all staff and students.
At this time, Facebook is the only social media site that is restricted during school hours.

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