Employee Use of Electronic Devices

Purpose

 

The Board recognized that mobile phones and electronic devices are now an integral part of the daily lives and culture of many of the district's employees. The Board further recognized that electronic devices are helpful to many employees to successfully execute their job duties. The Board adopts this policy because the presence of mobile phones and electronic devices in school has the potential to distract employees from their educational mission, to pose a safety risk to employees and students, and to otherwise disrupt the educational environment.

 

Delegation of Responsibility

 

The Superintendent or designee shall develop procedures to implement this policy, and shall delegate to his/her designee(s) the right to enforce this policy.

 

Definitions

 

Electronic Devices shall include any personal communication device including mobile telephones and smartphones; any device that can capture still images or movies; any device that can record, store, display, transmit, or receive electronic text, audio, or video; personal digital assistants (PDAs); any device that can provide a connection to the Internet (whether wireless, wired, 3G or 4G); laptops and tablet computers, electronic gaming systems, pagers, and e-readers.

 

Sensitive Data shall include any student information that includes personally identifiable information, other than directory information, pursuant to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), and any employee information that contains a social security number, home address, rate of pay, benefits received, immigration status, and any information not publicly available pursuant to the Pennsylvania Right to Know Law.

 

Guidelines

 

Employees may possess and use their personal electronic devices at school and during school-related activities subject to the guidelines below.

 

Device Use During the School Day

 

Employees with instructional or supervisory responsibilities for students may not use personal electronic devices for personal reasons during instructional times, while on-duty, while supervising or monitoring students, or during staff development times. Electronic devices may be used during prep time, during breaks and lunch if not supervising students, before student arrival, and after students have been dismissed for the school day, so long as such use does not detract from the employee's performance of their normal work duties.

 

Employees may use personal electronic devices for educational and instructional purposes during instructional times. However, if the content utilized via the electronic device is not available on the district's network due to content filtering, prior approval must be obtained by the building administrator.

 

Nothing in this policy shall affect the ability of employees to use an electronic device because of the employee's urgent health or safety needs, or those of their family, or in the event of an emergency.

 

The Board prohibits all employees from any use of electronic devices in locker rooms, bathrooms and other changing areas.

 

Acceptable Use

 

If an employee's electronic device utilized the district's Internet connection or is connected to any district-owned technology resources, the school district's Acceptable Use Policy applies and is incorporated herein by reference.

 

Employee Responsibility for Phone and Data Charges

 

Employees who require electronic devices to complete their job duties may be supplied with the necessary device (s) by the district at the direction of the Superintendent or his/her designee. Any employee who chooses to utilize their own electronic device during school hours, at school sponsored activities, or to conduct school business assumes full responsibility for any phone or data charges that may result from such use.

 

Protection of Sensitive Data and Information

 

All employees of the district have obligations under federal law to protect students' personally identifiable information and certain personal employee information from any unauthorized disclosure or release. Employees must comply with all applicable laws and should exercise caution, and utilize appropriate security measures such as password protection on their electronic device, to prevent any unauthorized access to sensitive data. In no case shall employees store sensitive data locally on the hard drive or internal memory of the employee's personal electronic device.

 

Upon retirement or termination of employment with the district, access to district e-mail and other technology resources will be promptly terminated.

 

Loss or Damage to Electronic Devices

 

Employees are solely responsible for the safe storage of any personal electronic devices that they choose to bring to school. The district shall not be liable or responsible for the loss or damage to any electronic devices that an employee brings to school, extra-curricular activities, or to school sponsored events or trips.

 

Limitation on Technical Support

 

District information technology staff may not provide technical assistance to employees for their personal electronic devices, However, this policy shall not prohibit district information technology staff from providing general instructions for the configuration of such devices to access or connect to district-owned technology resources.

 

Reasonable Accommodation

 

Nothing in this policy shall prohibit employee use of an electronic device if needed as a reasonable accommodation for a disability.

 

Penalties for Violations

 

Use of employee electronic devices in violation of this policy, other Board policies, administrative regulations, and/or state or federal laws may result in discipline, up to and including dismissal. If appropriate, referrals will be made to law enforcement officials.

 

Development of Administrative Guidelines

 

The Superintendent or his/her designee may develop administrative guidelines to implement this policy. The Superintendent shall ensure that all employees are made aware of this policy and any administrative guidelines by means of the district website, or other reasonable means of written notification.

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