Digital Directions - Fall 2012 - (Page 8)

BITSTRENDSBYTES & NEWS AND SOCIAL NETWORKING Parents See Benefits in Kids’ Facebook Time >> MONITOR BY “FRIENDING” THEM MONITOR BY MAKING THEM SHOW THEIR PROFILE PAGES SAFETY & SECURITY Durham Students Can Now Text Anonymous Tips Students in Durham, N.C., public schools can now use their mobile phones to provide anonymous tips to school safety administrators. The service, called Text-A-Tip, allows students to send anonymous tips online, via smartphone, or by sending a text message to “CRIMES” (274637) with the keyword DPSTIP from any mobile phone. “In a school setting, it’s often imperative that information be conveyed to authorities quickly,” says Eric Becoats, the superintendent of the 32,700-student district. “And with Text-A-Tip, students will know that it is safe for them to do the right thing without ever disclosing their identity.” Students can use Text-A-Tip to report any safety-related information, including bullying, suicide prevention, sexting, drug use, or information about potential crimes. Currently used by more than 800 schools and law-enforcement agencies throughout the country, Text-A-Tip, which is provided by Draper, Utah-based CrimeReports, allows text-message providers to remain anonymous by encrypting the text messages, assigning them a unique ID, and routing them through secure servers. —McCLATCHY-TRIBUNE INFORMATION Parents, it turns out, rarely see Facebook as a danger zone. A whopping 83 percent of parents think the benefits of their children’s socialmedia use outweigh or at least balance any perceived risks. In a national survey by Children’s Mercy, Hospitals and Clinics, almost three-fourths of parents said social media prepare children for success in a digital society and encourage curiosity and collaboration. The results surprised researchers at Kansas City, Mo.-based Children’s Mercy, given that parents also said they are concerned about child molesters, sexting, and cyberbullying. More than half of the 728 parents surveyed thought social media made their children PARENTS MONITOR THEIR CHILDREN BY LOGGING INTO THEIR ACCOUNTS that children’s virtual lives could get in the way of their real-life social skills and friendships. The expert’s take? Social-media exposure has many benefits, says Children’s Mercy child psychologist Ed Christophersen, but giving children unlimited and unsupervised access is asking for trouble. “Most of us did some things as adolescents that we don’t want on the front page of The Kansas City Star,” he says. “And yet we kind of assume blindly that our kids won’t.” Police agree. “You have a right to demand the password for your children,” Overland Park, Kan., police spokesman Gary Mason says. “They’re your kids, and you should be actively looking at what they put on the Internet.” Of the parents surveyed, 71 percent believe that 13 is the right age to let their children use Facebook. Christophersen says that’s usually the right choice. “People keep saying ‘what age, what DO NOT MONITOR CHILD’S FACEBOOK ACTIVITIES 51% SOURCE: MinorMonitor 2012 more open-minded. Barely two in five parents worried their children’s online activity could breed social isolation and behavioral problems. Roughly the same number was concerned age, what age?’ Well, it depends on the maturity level,” he says. “If you’ve had a kid that has just been a pain, why would you give them unlimited access to the Internet?” Facebook restricts children younger than 13 from opening an account, although it’s not uncommon for children to lie about their age when signing up. —MCT 8 >> PHOTO: iStockphoto_Doug Schneider; SILHOUETTE: iStockphoto_jc_design 24 8 17

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Digital Directions - Fall 2012

Digital Directions - Fall 2012
Editor's Note
DD Site Visit
Bits & Bytes
Shifting to Adaptive Testing
Tailoring the Tests To Special Needs?
Choosing the Right Device
Bandwidth Demand Rising
Are You Ready?
Where’s the Money?
High-Priority Virtual PD
Online PD Destinations
Virtual Ed. Dives In to the Common Core
Open Education Resources Surge

Digital Directions - Fall 2012