Use of Information Technologies by Students

Student Essentials

Use of Information Technologies by Students

Policy Information for Parents


The integration of notebook computers and other information technologies into classrooms provides resources and communication opportunities that enhance the teaching and learning experience. The successful use of these resources requires a disciplined attitude and a forward looking approach to the use of electronic media as teaching and learning tools.

1.1 The Role of Students

Students will use their laptop computers and the school computer network responsibly. Communication on the information networks is often public and the general school rules pertaining to student behaviour, conduct and standards apply.

When using their laptop and accessing school information resources, students must follow the policy and guidelines detailed in this document and in the Network User Policy. It is essential that all parties act according to the laws and regulations that affect the use of electronic media. The school must comply with these and is expected to monitor and support the compliance of students.

Students who fail to honour this Code of Conduct will be referred to Student Services and may forfeit the right to access the school network.

1.2 The Role of Parents or Caregivers

The role of parents and caregivers is to convey the importance of the contents of this policy, the Network User Policy and other school policies. They can assist the school by communicating any concerns with their child’s use of the school resources and having a educative approach to the use of information technology in the home.

1.3 The Role of Teaching Staff

School teaching staff will present a teaching and learning program that encourages the effective use of electronic resources for educational purposes. They will monitor that students’ use of laptops, the school computers and network appropriately. They will also provide guidance and instruction to students in accessing curriculum information and the appropriate use of such resources.

This includes staff facilitating the students’ use of their laptops in support of the educational program and the development of teaching methods that take into account the varied instructional needs, learning styles, abilities and developmental levels of students.

1.4 The Role of the School

The school commits to upholding the Usage Policy Guidelines and providing physical and financial resources to enable safe, educationally relevant access to curriculum facilities for staff and students.

The school shares responsibility for information published electronically by students while at school or using the school resources or under the school’s name. The school is obliged to meet legal requirements and community standards in relation to copyright, statements about other persons and limiting the risks inherent in the use of electronic media.

Students with special needs to achieve equitable access will be catered for according to Department of Education guidelines.


2.1 Occupational Safety and Health Guidelines

The basic health and safety guidelines for desktop computers also apply to laptop use:

  • keep the upper arms relaxed at the side of the body
  • bend the elbows to around 90 degrees
  • keep the wrists straight
  • change position every 15-20 minutes
  • take a complete break to get up and move every 30-60 minutes
  • use correct seating
  • adhere to good practice guidelines about personal information and passwords

2.2 Security Access

A log of all access to the internet including department based e-mail will be maintained and periodically scanned. It is a condition of network access that students agree to the monitoring of all activities including their files, email and Internet access. The Network Administrator and the school network staff reserve the right to monitor all activities on the network.

2.3 Cybersafety

Parents will be aware of incidents regarding safety online. Personal information is easily tracked and harvested by those who know how, so it is important to keep as safe as possible while online. Parents are encouraged to check the following site online for further useful information:

  • The main government cybersafety information website

2.4 Data

Saving or backing-up of data is the student’s responsibility. To back-up their work it is recommended students purchase a USB flash drive or, preferably, an external hard drive. Teachers may not accept data loss as an excuse for failure to submit work on time.

If a laptop needs virtual repair, students will have access to ‘healing stations’ in the library where they may re-image their machine. Please note that re-imaging the laptop will lose all data. Full procedures for virtual recovery are published and available in the library.

2.5 Virus protection

Students are to practice normal procedures for the managing of virus protection and to limit the spread of viruses between machines. All machines used at school must be configured with anti-virus software which frequently and automatically checks for viruses. On the detection of a virus or the suspicion of a viral infection, the student must inform the technician in the library at the next break.

2.6 Printing

Printing will be supervised by the teacher in charge of the class for which the student wishes to print materials. Students must arrange for this to occur during class time or at another time convenient for the classroom teacher.


The Acceptable Use Policy is a written statement that formally presents the rules of use of software, networks, printers and internet access while at school or using school provided resources. When logged into the Department of Education network or portals staff and students are accessing the Department of Education resources and are bound by Department of Education rules of use.

Students at Willetton Senior High School are offered free access to the internet and other resources on the school’s network. This access is a privilege and students are required to use the information network safely, effectively and responsibly. The Internet and the school’s network is provided for curriculum purposes only. Inappropriate use will result in temporary or permanent cancellation of network privileges.

3.1 Student Network Accounts and Responsibilities

Student passwords must be kept confidential and students are prohibited from revealing their network password to anyone except the System Administrator. Account owners will be held responsible for all activity under their account. Students are responsible for their accounts and everything on their machines. As passwords must be kept secret, no user may claim that another person entered their home directory and did anything to cause school rules to be broken.

Users are prohibited from:

  • attempting to log into the network with any user name or password that is not their own, or changing any other person’s password; passwords can be reset only by the computer technicians or the Network Manager
  • using or possessing any program designed to reduce network security
  • entering any other person’s file directory or doing anything whatsoever to another person’s files
  • attempting to alter any person’s access rights
  • modifying the settings and configuration of any computer system attached to the school’s fixed computer network
  • installation of unauthorised software
  • bringing or downloading unauthorised programs to school or running them on school computers
  • storing the following types of files in their home directory on the school server, without permission from their teacher:
    • program files
    • compressed files
    • picture files, unless they are required by a subject
    • obscene material – pictures or text
    • obscene filenames
    • insulting material
    • password-protected files

Deliberate attempts to disrupt the operation of the school’s network (eg the accessing of the operating system, downloading or creation of computer viruses) will result in disciplinary action. Such activity will be referred to Student Services and students may forfeit the right to access the school network.

Students will immediately report any system malfunction to their supervising teacher and then to the network technicians in the library.

3.2 Student Internet Responsibilities

  • Students may not visit any web site that is not directly connected with school work (in particular watching videos or downloading music for personal use is not permitted).
  • Students must not load any web browser during class time or in the library without the express permission of the teacher. The use of browsers during break time is prohibited.
  • Students may not access inappropriate or offensive material. If a user inadvertently accesses a site which contains inappropriate material the user must immediately withdraw from the site and report that site to their supervising teacher; the supervising teacher will report the incident to Student Services.
  • Students must protect their and other users’ privacy. Personal information such as home addresses and telephone numbers must never be revealed on the Internet.
  • Copyright laws must be observed at all times. The rules governing plagiarism aply to all electronic media and information accessed on the Internet has to be used in an appropriate manner in assignments. The source must be cited in the reference process.
  • Transmission of any material in violation of any state or federal law is prohibited. This includes threatening, harassing and offensive material.
  • Breaking software copyright. It is illegal to copy or distribute school software. Software from other sources is not to be copied or installed on the school equipment or private equipment attached to the school network.

3.3 Internet Usage

As the Internet is a relatively unsupervised environment, the school has a responsibility to ensure that, as far as possible, material obtained from the Internet is not offensive or inappropriate. To this end, filtering software has been placed on the Internet links. It nonetheless remains the responsibility of individual students to ensure their behaviour does not contravene school rules or rules imposed by parents/caregivers or the law.

The school is aware that definitions of ‘offensive’ and ‘inappropriate’ will vary considerably between cultures and individuals. The school is also aware that no security system is perfect and that there is always the possibility of inappropriate material, intentionally and unintentionally, being obtained and displayed. Students and parents are asked to notify the Network Administrator should they have concerns with the school network or the access that students have to certain material.

It is the responsibility of the school to:

  • Provide training on the use of the internet and make that training available to everyone authorised to use the school’s internet link.
  • Take action to block the further display of offensive or inappropriate material that has appeared on the internet links.
  • Take action so that students do not deliberately enter or remain in any site that has any of the following content:
    • Nudity, obscene language or discussion intended to provoke a sexual response.
    • Violence.
    • Information about committing any crime.
    • Information about making or using weapons, booby traps, dangerous practical jokes or revenge activities.
    • The Department of Education restricts access to social media and similar sites. Students are discouraged from use of these unless it is with the express permission of the classroom teacher.

Students must follow school guidelines and procedures when preparing materials for publication on the web:

  • Not use material from other web sites unless they have permission from the person who created the material. If unsure, students should check with their teacher.
  • Not access any other material that their parents or caregivers have forbidden them to see. If students encounter any such site, they must immediately turn off the laptop and notify a teacher. They should not show the site to their friends first.