Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Today is Banned Websites Awareness Day

Today we celebrate Banned Websites Awareness Day, an important part of Banned Books Week in the library community. The purpose of this day is to promote an awareness of the effects that online filters have on student learning. While there certainly are many reasons to have restrictive filtering in place in a school setting, it is also valuable to acknowledge the drawbacks.

Many students miss out on the opportunities to hone their digital citizenship skills, which are crucial in our 21st century world. How are students to practice ethical online decision-making skills when they are cut off from the chance to engage in discussion and collaboration on social networking sites? How can students further their learning with online resources if streaming video is universally blocked?

This is an Intellectual Freedom issue that only works to widen the digital divide.

Students, how would your learning experiences be different if all free web content was available to you at school? Faculty, how would your teaching change if no online sites were blocked on our network?

Read more about this issue in a blog post titled, A Tale of Two Students.

~ Mrs. Z

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