Sacred Heart School is Fully Accredited
by the Schools Commission of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and by the Western Catholic Educational Association.

Internet Safety


The following links will connect you with valuable information to help you ensure the safety of your children.

Please read part 2 of the Internet Safety bulletin that you were given at re-registration. Get it here!

Please visit www.webwisekids.org for important information!

Three mothers are shocked to see their daughters' MySpace pages online! Watch this video!

Teens meet their "online friend" - what a surprise! Watch the video to see how deceptive online predators can be!

Scroll about 1/2 way down to the find the section entitled "check out myspace.com"

This is an interactive website to help parents learn more about Internet safety issues.

This site contains a variety of information about Internet safety and privacy issues.



May 11, 2005

Dear Parents of 6th, 7th and 8th Grade Students,

I am writing to make you aware of a situation that is becoming quite prevalent with our students. This is the use of a website called "myspace.com". The purpose of this website is to provide a place for communication among those who use it. There are many groups that utilize myspace.com for legitimate reasons such as study groups and other positive areas of communication. Used properly, it can certainly provide a helpful tool to accomplish these types of goals. Unfortunately, myspace.com can also be used for inappropriate purposes as well. I am appreciative of the information shared with me by the administrators at Bishop Amat High School as they have had much more experience with this than I have.

It is important to remember that while many feel a certain sense of anonymity on the Internet, information that is posted there does become accessible to the public. Students can create a page on myspace.com by inputing their actual name or by using a pseudonym. These pages contain pictures of students, their friends, families, etc. In addition, some pages contain graphic language and content. Students post a variety of personal information including their age (many claim to be much older than they are), sexual orientation, place of residence and name/location of school attended. You can imagine our concern about pictures of our students posted along with the name and location of our school.

Over the past few days, I have spent a great deal of time on myspace.com, and I was quite surprised by what I discovered. I encourage you to go online to http://www.myspace.com and do a search for your child’s email address, name, school name, etc. You may be surprised at what you find. In addition, while your search may not yield a result for your particular child, looking through pages belonging to your child’s friends may reveal that your child has posted remarks to that student. In this case, you can click on that picture and it will take you to his/her page. Remember, some students do not use their real names or pictures.

Derogatory remarks posted about others (including students, faculty, school) can be considered harassment and/or slander. In reading media accounts, there have been instances where parents have been held liable for slander perpetrated by a minor child on the Internet. In addition, one in five children is approached online by a sexual predator! There are many websites that can be of help to you in learning more about this type of communication. http://www.moralert.com is an excellent resource. Scroll about half way down to find the section entitled "check out myspace.com". An interactive website to help parents learn more about Internet safety issues is called http://www.netsmartz.org. Another site to check out would be http://www.aftab.com which contains a variety of information about Internet safety and privacy issues. I have posted some VALUABLE articles on our own website at www.shs.cc. Visit the home page and click on the Internet safety link. I hope this information is helpful for you.

My purpose in this letter is not to diminish the use of myspace.com and other sites of a similar purpose. I simply want to bring this situation to your attention so that you can have a conversation with your child about issues of this nature. While the school cannot control what your child does outside of our boundaries, there may be a time when we must become involved in a complaint of harassment or worse because of inappropriate use of the website. I sincerely hope that you will be supportive of us in these efforts should the need arise. It would be a great time to review the Archdiocesan Harassment Policy (in your parent-student handbook) with your child. I will be speaking with all students in grades 6,7,8 tomorrow, May 12th on the issue of Internet safety. To ensure that you received this letter, please sign and return the attached note to me IMMEDIATELY. I will be calling all parents who have not returned the attached note by Friday morning, May 13th. It is imperative that I know that ALL parents received this information.

I take safety seriously. It is our job at Sacred Heart School to do everything within our power to ensure that your child is safe. I hope that by bringing this issue to your attention, it will foster communication within your home about Internet safety. If I can be of any assistance to you in this matter, please do not hesitate to contact me. I will do my best to answer your questions (I am not an expert!) and share what I know. Thank you in advance for your continued partnership in making sure our students are safe at all times.


Mrs. April M. Luchonok


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