Parents or the State? Virginia becomes 1st state to require Internet safety lessons

Filed as News on April 8, 2008 5:31 am

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I grew up in a small town – where the schools taught reading, writing, and arithmetic – and parents took the time to ensure that their children were safe – and perhaps that’s the part that sticks in my mind when I read this morning that Virginia has become the 1st state to require Internet safety lessons to be taught in classrooms.

According to WDBJ7 in Roanoke, Virginia, public schools in the state will be mandated to teach Internet safety classes to all grade levels. The requirement came about because of concerns about sex offenders preying on children online coupled with an increase in Internet-based crime.

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  1. By Chris Osborne posted on April 8, 2008 at 9:06 pm
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    I really challenge anyone to come up with a line of logic that says this is a bad idea. There can be nothing bad about teaching safety.

    That being said, it is still ultimately the parents responsibility to raise the child. but help never hurt.

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  2. By Angel posted on April 9, 2008 at 1:12 pm
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    I agree it is not a bad idea on face value, but what comment does it make when you basically say that parents are not doing their job, so the state has to do it for them? As Chris above points out, “it is still ultimately the parents responsibility to raise the child.” I just wish more so-called parents would actually take that notion seriously.

    Having said that, as a librarian I am all for more teaching of better Internet safety. God knows I see tons of people everyday asking how to contact that nice Nigerian man.

    Best, and keep on blogging.

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  3. By Luke Gilkerson posted on April 10, 2008 at 12:00 pm
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    As far as I am concerned, by sending one’s children to public school, one is entrusting a number of parental duties to the state anyway. Certainly this is a good thing to teach in the classroom, especially if parents have defaulted this kind of safety education to the schools.

    On the note of parents taking responsibility for their children’s education . . .

    Have you heard of Covenant Eyes monitoring and filtering programs? It is a unique program on the market because it gives the user flexibility to filter or simply monitor the Internet or both. A good filtering program is very helpful for children and families, but a good monitoring program is great for adults and children alike who want to be accountable to others about where they go online.

    Covenant Eyes monitoring program simply tracks (without blocking) everywhere someone goes online. Then each part of each web page is rated and scored for its content (scores are based on obscene or pornographic material). Users choose 2 or 3 people that they want to receive a detailed “accountability report” of all their online activity (emails to them or available to see online 24/7). What this does is it allows complete freedom to the person using the Internet, but it takes away the anonymity of online activity; people are more likely to exorcise self-control when they know that others will be reviewing their whereabouts online.

    I’ve found the program very helpful.

    Covenant Eyes also has a promotional code you can use to get a free month to try out their accountability service. Go to http://www.covenanteyes.com and enter promocode ‘onefree’ to receive a free 30 day trial of the program.

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