Magazine article American Libraries

Filter-Savvy Students Barred from Most of Web

Magazine article American Libraries

Filter-Savvy Students Barred from Most of Web

Article excerpt

As of October 20, students of the Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District headquartered in Palmer, Alaska, are no longer able to retrieve websites on classroom or media-center computers unless the site ends in a .gov or .edu domain name, or is a database whose content is licensed by the district, or the district has approved an educator's request that the site be unblocked. The action came in response to an October report that the top five websites visited by students during school hours between September 25 and October 6 were "noninstructional and noneducational," District Public Information Officer Traci Crotteau told American Libraries.

"What is blocked today is accessed tomorrow through a different door," Chief School Administrator Bob Doyle wrote in an October 10 letter to district department directors, school principals, and librarians. "The Management Information Services (MIS) Department has tried hard to provide adequate access to the internet and to maintain a safe environment for students," he went on to say, but is losing the battle "due to the fact the district has many industrious and computer-savvy students. …

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