St. Finian's College,
Mullingar
Est. 1802
secretary@stfinianscollege.ie
(044) 934 8672 - (044) 934 8313
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Internet Acceptable Use Policy St Finians College 2020-2021 (Iaup)

Rationale

We have formulated the following Internet Acceptable Use Policy or IAUP in accordance with the schools fundamental aim to foster in students a sense of self-reliance, independence, co-operation and responsibility and to provide them with skills for life-long learning where the school believes that access to the schools ICT resources plays an important role.
Internet use and access is considered a school resource and privilege. Therefore, if the school AUP is not adhered to this privilege will be withdrawn and appropriate sanctions – as outlined in the AUP and the Code of Behaviour will be imposed.

Google Classroom & Remote Learning

St Finian’s College is a Google School. Every pupil has been furnished with a school email address: 2019jbloggs@stfinianscollege.ie. This is the official email address for accessing their Google classroom for Learning. The school domain @stfinianscollege.ie will not recognise email addresses from outside this domain and access to Google Classrooms will be denied.

Every teacher has a school email address in this domain, eg jbloggs@stfinianscollege.ie

Teachers can be contacted using email during school term during school hours, 9am – 4pm, Monday – Friday.

Every teacher has established a Google classroom for each of their classes. This is accessed through a code which has been given to each student. It is the responsibility of each student to ensure that they have their up to date access codes for every subject area that they are studying.

Code of Excellence for St Finain’s College applies online in Google Classroom in the same way as it applies in the actual physical classroom. All breaches of the code will be dealt with according to the school rules and regulations.

Online work and assignments should be submitted on time. Department of Education deadlines must be observed. Extensions cannot be granted. Issues with WiFi/ Broadband should be reported to the teacher/and /or school office as soon as possible.

Exams and assessments must be completed within the school day at the time alloted by the teacher. Individual timetables are not possible to accommodate.

Parents can view their child’s progress through the VSWare system. Every parent has a username and a password. Parents should contact the school office if they do not have access to VSWare.

Online Classes Rules/ Conduct

  • In the event of a school closure classes will continue online remotely.
  • Pupils are expected to engage with online classes with the same respect and positive attitude as they would in a school based classroom.
  • Pupils are asked to log into their online classes as scheduled on their timetable.
  • When work is scheduled online a deadline will be set for submission.  Please adhere to these deadlines.  Progress with the curriculum will be ongoing and therefore it is essential that pupils adhere to their school timetable to the best of their ability.
  • Online behaviour must at all times be appropriate and respectful.  
  • A Google Classroom is provided to ensure, amongst other reasons, the continuation of Teaching & Learning during periods where the school is required to close during term time.  It is imperative that the behaviour of all pupils adheres to that of our code of excellence.  The posting of inappropriate or offensive behaviour will necessitate the reporting of such behaviour to the school authorities and if necessary the Gardaí.  It may also result in the Google Classroom being closed.

The aim of this Acceptable Use Policy is to ensure that pupils will benefit from learning opportunities offered by the schools Internet resources in a safe and effective manner.

Schools Strategy

The school employs a number of strategies in order to maximise learning opportunities and reduce risks associated with the Internet. These strategies are as follows:

General

  • Internet sessions will be supervised by a teacher.
  • Filtering software and/or equivalent systems will be used in order to minimize the risk of exposure to inappropriate material.
  • Each student will be assigned a specific computer/ Chromebook to use whilst in the computer room/ classroom as per the seating plan. Students may not use any other computer/device without the permission of the supervising teacher.
  • Uploading and downloading of non-approved software, data files, image files, audio and video files will not be permitted.
  • Virus protection software will be used and updated on a regular basis.
  • The use of personal memory sticks or other digital storage media in school requires a teacher’s permission.
  • Students will treat others with respect at all times and will not undertake any actions that may bring the school or its staff members into disrepute.
  • Students will observe good etiquette i.e. etiquette on the Internet at all times and will not undertake any actions that may bring the school into disrepute.
  • Any use of the schools computing resources or Internet connection that could be considered bullying is in breach of this policy and in breach of the anti-bullying policy and will be treated accordingly.

World Wide Web Online

Students will not visit Internet sites that contain obscene, illegal, hateful or otherwise objectionable materials.

  • Students will use the Internet for educational purposes only. Students will report accidental accessing of inappropriate material to the supervising teacher. The teacher must then record the incident in their journal. Year Head will be informed. If it is more serious in nature, the Deputy Principal / Principal must be informed.
  • Students will be made aware not to copy information into assignments and fail to acknowledge the source. This constitutes Plagiarism and Copyright Infringement. This may lead to no grade being awarded.
  • Students will be asked to never disclose or publicise personal information unless for educational purposes under the supervision of the teacher.
  • Downloading and uploading materials or images not relevant to their studies is in direct breach of the school’s acceptance use policy.
  • Students will be made aware that any usage, including distributing or receiving information, school related or personal may be monitored for unusual activity, security and/or network management reasons.

Email

  • Students will not send or receive any material that is illegal, obscene, and/or defamatory or that is intended to annoy or intimidate another person.
  • Students will use their school email address only and not personal email accounts. Students will use these approved email accounts to access Google Classroom. Students will note that sending and receiving email attachments using the approved school email account only. This is best practice for remote learning.
  • Students will not reveal their own or other people’s personal details; such as addresses or telephone numbers or pictures.
  • Students are asked to never arrange a face-to-face meeting with someone they only know through emails or the Internet.

Internet Chat

  • Students should only have access to chat rooms, discussion forums, messaging or other electronic communication forums for educational purposes.
  • Social networking sites including Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, MSN Messenger and any other similar sites are not allowed to be accessed in the classroom/in the school.
  • Proxy servers are strictly forbidden.
  • Students will be encouraged where possible to use Usernames in order to avoid disclosures of identity.
  • Face-to-face meetings with any third party organised via Internet chat are forbidden.

School Website/Facebook/Instagram

  • The website will be regularly checked to ensure that there is no content that compromises the safety of pupils or staff.
  • The publication of student’s work will be coordinated by a teacher.
  • Pupils’ work will appear in an educational context on Facebook/Instagram.
  • The school will endeavour to use digital photographs, video and audio clips focusing on group activities. Content focusing on individual students will be published on the school website/Facebook/Instagram where parental approval has been given. This is generally given in writing on enrollment to the school.
  • Personal pupil and staff information including home address and contact details will be omitted from school web pages.
  • The school will ensure that the image files are appropriately named.
  • Pupils will continue to own the copyright on any of their work published on the school website/Facebook/Instagram

Personal Devices

  • Pupils using their own technology in school such as leaving a mobile turned on or using it in class, sending nuisance text messages, or the unauthorised taking of images with a mobile phone camera still or moving is in direct breach of the school’s acceptable use policy and of the school’s mobile phone policy and will be dealt with accordingly.

Legislation

There is no specific legislation governing Internet safety at school level. This is complicated by the fact that the Internet functions in a global context whereas the law functions in a localised one. The following pieces of legislation however have relevance to Internet safety.

Data Protection (Amendment) Act 2003

Child Trafficking and Pornography Act 1998

Interception Act 1993

Video Recordings Act 1989

The Data Protection Act 1988

Sanctions

Misuse of the Internet will result in disciplinary action. In extreme cases, suspension or expulsion in accordance with the school Code of Excellence may be applied. The school also reserves the right to report any illegal activities to the appropriate authorities.

Roles and Responsibilities – Teachers

  • Teachers will assign specific places in the computer room/ assign specific chrome books in the classroom. Teachers will endeavour to closely supervise students’ use of computers at all times. However, it is the responsibility of the student to act responsibly when using a computer / Chromebook.
  • Teachers will explain and revisit the AUP in August & September of each academic year.
  • Teachers will ensure that students Internet use will be planned, task-orientated and educational within a regulated and managed environment.

St Finian’s College 2020-2021

SOCIAL MEDIA GUIDELINES & ACCEPTABLE USAGE POLICY (“A.U.P.”)

INTRODUCTION

These guidelines and A.U.P. have been developed to assist all employees of St Finian’s College(hereinafter referred to as “the School”) in making ethical, respectful and acceptable decisions about their professional and personal social media usage and to provide clear direction on the importance of protecting the School’s reputation and confidential information.

Social media refers to social and professional networking platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, YouTube, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Instagram, blogs, message boards and forums and other similar online facilities.

The guidelines and A.U.P. are not intended to prevent employees from engaging in social media but are intended to inform employees as to what is considered by the School to constitute appropriate / inappropriate social media usage and conduct.

For those employees who are members of the School’s teaching staff, the guidelines and A.U.P. give effect to agreed professional protocols as prescribed by the Code of Professional Conduct for Teachers (Teaching Council, June 2012) which provides that teachers should: -

ensure that any communication with pupils/students, colleagues, parents, school management and others is appropriate, including communication via electronic media, such as email, texting and social networking sites.

and

ensure that they do not knowingly access, download or otherwise have in their possession while engaged in school activities, inappropriate materials/images in electronic or other format.

All employees should be mindful of what they post on social media, who can see it and how it can be linked back to the School and work colleagues. Misuse of social media can cause injury to others and can have a negative impact on the reputation of the School. Social media communications are never truly private and once information is published it becomes part of a permanent record.

Employees areat all times prohibited from using or publishing information on social media which has the potential to negatively impact / reflect on the School and / or its employees and / or its students e.g.: -

  • publishing defamatory, abusive or offensive material concerning any employee, volunteer, member of School management, parent(s), student(s), visitor or other member of the School community;
  • publishing any confidential or sensitive information concerning the School or members of the School community;
  • publishing material that might reasonably be considered to have the effect of damaging the reputation of the School.

The School reserves the right to take disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, in respect of employees who engage in prohibited conduct and conduct in breach of this policy.

Given the ever developing and changing nature of social media and the internet the within guidelines and policy will be reviewed and adapted as required.

This policy should be read in conjunction with staff policies which are applicable to social media usage, in particular the dignity at work, internet and email usage, data protection, the Code of Professional Conduct for Teachers and other and disciplinary policies and procedures.

ACCEPTABLE USAGE POLICY

  1. SOCIAL MEDIA USAGE ON A SOCIAL MEDIA SITE OR PROFILE ESTABLISHED IN THE COURSE OF EMPLOYMENT WHICH RELATES TO SCHOOL BUSINESS / MATTERS
  1. Seek permission: Employees must seek or have permission from the Principal / Deputy Principal(s) before setting up a site or profile relating to School business and or School matters / registering in the School’s name on social media sites, user groups, special interest forums and bulletin boards / using social media for teaching and learning purposes.
  2. Property: The property rights in a sanctioned social media account in the name of or on behalf of the School are vested in the School.
  3. Responsibility: A permitted employee is responsible for his/her social media usage, for ensuring that private and confidential information is respected and protected at all times and for compliance with the terms and conditions of the relevant social media platform.
  4. Privacy & Confidential information: Confidential information pertaining to the School, its employees, volunteers, students, parents and others in the School community must be respected and maintained at all times. Personal information about any students, parents, employees or volunteers must not be divulged or discussed on social media sites.
  5. Unacceptable use: Employees must not create, publish, download or communicate material/content that could reasonably be regarded as defamatory, inappropriate, discriminatory, offensive, hostile, pornographic, damaging to the School’s reputation or referring to a third person without their permission. Uploading, forwarding or linking to the aforementioned content is also unacceptable. Employees must never reveal sensitive details whether relating to the School, its employees, volunteers, students, parents and other members of the School community on social media sites.
  6. Behaviour: Postings by an employee on a social media site that are defamatory, inappropriate, discriminatory, offensive, hostile, pornographic, divulging personal data without consent or damaging to the School’s reputation will be addressed pursuant to the School’s disciplinary procedure and may result in disciplinary sanction up to and including dismissal.
  1. PERSONAL SOCIAL MEDIA USAGE
  1. Boundaries: Personal profiles are not to be used to conduct school business or to communicate with students/parents. Online interaction with management, other employees and/or school contacts should be appropriate and professional in nature. Employees must not use the official School e-mail address when participating in personal social media / social media that is not related to the employee’s job. Personal use of social media must not occur during working time but is restricted to break times at work.
  2. Identity: Where an employee chooses to identify him/herself on social media as an employee of the School, s/he must make it clear that their communications do not represent the School, its ethos, position, opinions or views. The employee must write in the first person and state clearly s/he is posting in a personal capacity and not in the course of employment or on behalf of the School and state clearly that the views expressed are his/her own and not those of the School. Employees should at all times be mindful of their communications and possible consequences.
  3. Be mindful and respectful: Employees must be mindful that their conduct not only reflects on themselves but also reflects on their professionalism and the School. Employees should exercise sound judgement, common sense and respect when participating in social media. Employees should not use insulting, offensive or disparaging language. If in doubt, don’t publish or post anything. Information published online is permanent and never completely private.
  4. Responsibility: Employees are personally responsible for their posts and actions on social media.
  5. Privacy & Confidential information: The obligations detailed at (A)(iv) above apply also to employees’ personal social media usage. Do not divulge or discuss confidential information pertaining to the School, its employees, volunteers, students, parents and others in the School community and personal information, including photographs, of third persons (including employees, students, parents and other members of the School community) must not be posted, divulged or discussed without the permission of the person concerned.
  6. Unacceptable use: Employees must not create, publish, download or communicate material/content that could reasonably be regarded as defamatory, inappropriate, discriminatory, offensive, hostile, pornographic, damaging to the School’s reputation or referring to a third person without their permission. Uploading, forwarding or linking to the aforementioned content is also unacceptable. Employees must never reveal sensitive details whether relating to the School, its employees, volunteers, students, parents and other members of the School community on social media sites.
  7. Behaviour: Postings by an employee on a social media site that are defamatory, inappropriate, discriminatory, offensive, hostile, pornographic, divulging personal data without consent or bring the School into disrepute will be addressed pursuant to the School’s disciplinary procedure and may result in disciplinary sanction up to and including dismissal.

REPORTING

Employees should immediately report to the Principal / Deputy Principal any inappropriate, abusive or defamatory or other unacceptable social media activity concerning the School, its employees, volunteers, students or other members of the School community. Such reports will be fully and confidentially investigated, the reported activity will be reviewed and, where appropriate, the content will be reported using the relevant online reporting mechanism.

ENFORCEMENT

The School will monitor social media usage on School computers, laptops, mobiles, tablets, notebook computers, smartphones, School accounts and School user names. The foregoing IT resources are the School’s property and are to be used for legitimate School business. Whilst the School will not specifically monitor social media for references to the School, its employees, volunteers, students, parents and other members of the School community, employees should not expect privacy in this regard.

A reported or suspected breach of this policy is a serious matter and will be investigated by School management pursuant to the appropriate workplace procedure. The School reserves the right to use information that is expressly prohibited by this policy and which comes to School management’s attention whether through monitoring or otherwise for disciplinary purposes.

Non-compliance by employees with any aspect of this policy may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including dismissal.

C. Review of Policy

The Board of Management after one year, and every two years thereafter will review this policy.

This policy has been ratified by the Board of Management at its meeting of August

Signed William Egerton Chairperson

Signed: John Mc Hale Principal

Next review date: May 2021

Calendar

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St. Finian's College
Mullingar
Est. 1802
 Longford Road, Mullingar, Co. Westmeath,
 Ireland, N91 H593
 (044) 934 8672 - (044) 934 8313
 secretary@stfinianscollege.ie
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