Responsible Use of Technology and Electronic Media for Students

  • Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) recognizes that the use of technology is prevalent in society. Students and staff have access to the internet, cell phones, games, and a variety of personal technology devices. Students and staff utilize social media websites and applications as well as a variety of other digital resources that allow them to interact, share, create and innovate. Staff members utilize these same resources as a means to effectively engage students, motivate student learning, and collaborate with colleagues.

    When using GCPS technology or network access, students are expected to follow the Student Conduct Behavior Code, including respecting others’ privacy. Online student accounts to be used for legitimate educational purposes will be subject to monitoring and review, including review of text and attachments that are related to that student or students. At NO TIME should a student consider GCPS email, networked applications, or account or technology access private or confidential in any way.

    While the school district does maintain internet filters, there may be times when a student may accidentally or purposefully discover inappropriate materials online. Gwinnett County Public Schools DOES NOT CONDONE the use of such materials. Inappropriate use of any GCPS technology resource or network access is a violation of the Student Conduct Behavior Code.

    Gwinnett County Public Schools is a 1:1 district. When a device has been assigned to a student and taken home or a technology resource has been checked out to a student, it is the family’s responsibility to monitor its use to ensure the student is following the Student Conduct Behavior Code and to ensure that the device or resource is returned in the condition it was received.

    Access is a privilege, not a right, and all students are expected to treat this learning tool with respect. GCPS technology, network access, and electronic resources must not be used to:

    • Harm other people.
    • Interfere with other people’s work.
    • Steal property.
    • Gain unauthorized access to other people’s files or programs.
    • Gain unauthorized access to online resources, including obtaining or using someone else’s password.
    • Make changes to the hardware or software configuration of any machine, including installing or deleting any software.
    • Improperly use the network, including introducing software viruses and/or bypassing local school or office security policies.
    • Steal, alter, or damage data and/or computers and network equipment.
    • Access, upload, download, and/or distribute pornographic, hate-oriented, profane, obscene, or sexually explicit material.

    Failure to follow these guidelines can violate C.G.A. § 16-9-90, § 16-9-91, § 16-9-93, and § 16-9-93.1 as well as Title XVII of The United States Public Law 106-554, known as the Children’s Internet Protection Act. Such use can also lead to disciplinary actions, up to and including loss of access to GCPS technology resources and further disciplinary actions as defined by existing GCPS policies. Such disciplinary actions may include confiscation of technology being used inappropriately if an incident occurs.


    Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Network

         As Gwinnett County Public Schools transitions to being a 1:1 student device district, it is allowing each school to choose whether to allow student access to the “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) network at its location for the 2022–23 school year.

         To participate in the use of the BYOD network, all users must agree to use the school network when available, and not personal mobile data service providers, on their devices. GCPS is not responsible for any damages, fees, lost functionality, support, or costs that may be the result of students or staff members using personal devices.

         Students in schools participating in the BYOD network must go into Settings on their device and “forget” the GCPS-Mobile network at the beginning of the school year and re-authenticate to the GCPS-Mobile network for the coming school year.


    Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)

         COPPA applies to operators of commercial websites and online services and limits their ability to collect personal information from children under the age of 13. COPPA allows the school to act as the parent’s agent and consent to the collection of a student’s information on the parent’s behalf within the educational context— where an operator collects personal information from students for the use and benefit of the school, and for no other commercial purpose. By signing the response form, parents grant consent for Gwinnett County Public Schools, and Gwinnett County Public Schools’ employees, to act as the parent’s agent in providing consent for the collection of student information within the educational context.


    Supplemental Technology and Student Email

         GCPS provides access to Google G Suite for Education and Microsoft Office 365 as supplemental resources to the district’s adopted Learning Management System for local schools to use if they wish. GCPS will allow the use and issue student email (Google Gmail and Microsoft Outlook) accounts to students for use internal to GCPS only. Students can access the email from any device via the Student Portal. However, for security purposes, students will only be able to send and receive emails to and from other Gwinnett County Public Schools users.