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Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Teachers Don't Want Youtube!

The Rock Hill School Board held their September Work Session on Monday, September 10, 2012. There was no action taken during the meeting. Fellow board member Ginny Moe has a blog post describing the events of the meeting. Click here to see what was covered and consider subscribing to her posts. And, while you're at it, send a note of sympathy to the superintendent. I doubt any superintendent in the country has  43% of their board posting on blogs. Lots of times this makes the superintendent's job 43% harder.

One of the items on the agenda was a discussion of the benefits of youtube and the requirements of CIPA (Children's Internet Protection Act). Below is the presentation I wish we had been given:

"I want to thank the board for making the bold move to support our efforts to implement IPADS (and IROCK) into the classroom. At times this is overwhelming as we try to find new and improved ways of educating our children. Our task is to change our management style to incorporate the tools our students need for the world of today. We appreciate your patience.

We  realize that IPADS are just a tool, and that we have to empower our staff and teachers to find innovative ways of utilizing this tool to improve education. A lot of those ways are going to be with content found on the internet. Content that is currently blocked by our  firewall, CISCO ASA. For example, youtube  (#3 most visited web site) sites such as; Spangler Science;  Ted-ED; Youtube for schools; University classes from Berkeley, Stanford and MIT; NASA and;  Khan Academy to name a few.

But right now, our teachers are overwhelmed. The thought of opening up youtube to a class full of students is scary, and quite frankly, it's scary to our technology folks as well. We don't know if our network can handle the load and as administrators, we don't want to force something on our teachers before they are ready. However, as keepers of our taxpayer investment, at a time with reduced state budgets and widening achievement gap between rich and poor, we cannot afford to turn away from a free source of credible education tools (over 500,000).

We need to be gate keepers, not road blocks, supportive and not authoritative. We need to be in a position to be responsive  when the time is right - and all this needs to be covered in policy. We'd like for the board to consider the policy revision below:



Code IJL Issued 5/02

Purpose:  To establish the board's vision and the basic structure for the selection and adoption of library/media center resource materials.

The function of the school media center library is to support and enrich the instructional program of the school. Teachers and students must have access to The library must provide a broad range of materials with a diversity of viewpoints, abilities and interests.

The board has the legal responsibility for the purchase and internet access of all instructional materials. The selection and ordering of library books, audiovisual and other materials, such as internet access, for the library media centers are the responsibility of the school library/media specialists in accordance with this adopted policy.

Library/media specialists will identify, order and organize materials, and authorize internet access, that will implement, enrich and support the educational program of the school district. Principals, teachers, supervisors and other school personnel will give suggestions, recommendations and other assistance.

The media specialist will evaluate the existing collection and consult reputable, unbiased professionally prepared selection aides such as the following.

·         Children's Catalog
·         List of Sources of Selection
-          Library Materials for South Carolina Elementary and Secondary Media Centers
·         Elementary Library Collection
·         Good Books for Children
·         List of Books
-          S.C. Elementary Libraries
·         School Library Journal
·         The Horn Book
·         Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

Materials selection criteria

The basic selection criterion is the appropriateness of the materials for use at the grade levels served.  In addition, the media specialist will judge the materials using the following criteria.

·         needs of the school and value to the collection
·         validity, accuracy, objectivity, currency and appropriateness of text
·         organization and presentation of contents
·         clarity, adequacy and scope of text
·         representatives of many viewpoints
·         high artistic quality and/or literary style
·         high degree of readability and/or comprehensibility
·         reputation and significance of author and producer
·         value commensurate with cost

Adopted 8/27/90; Revised 5/27/02

The school district's new web site went live on Monday.  Click here to check it out.

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