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191 Apps (Google) Info

Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 provides students and teachers with Google Apps for Education. Google Apps is a suite of online applications designed to promote and support simple collaboration among groups of students and staff. For students, accounts will include e-mail (for middle and high school students only), document sharing, spreadsheets, and other powerful collaboration tools to use on school-based learning activities. 
Google Apps will allow students to work with other students and with teachers in real time on papers and other documents from anywhere they have access to the internet.
With this increased online activity and sharing, we understand that parents may have questions and concerns. We've tried to compile answers to some common questions below..
What programs will my child be able to use?
Access to email, calendars, document sharing, and a website creation tool was given to Burnsville High School students in the spring of 2012 and extended to students at all three middle schools in the fall of 2012. 
Students in grades K-5 were given access to calendars, document sharing and website creation. The email feature of 191 Apps is not active for elementary students.
Will my child be safe using these online applications?
Yes. District 191 is following all online safety laws and regulations regarding children and the internet. There are two laws in particular that protect minors in online interactions. First, the Child Internet Protection Act (CIPA) requires school districts to have technology measures and policies in place that protect students from harmful materials including those that are obscene and pornographic. This requirement is addressed in District Policy IIBG - Internet and Electronic Communication Acceptable Use and Safety Policy. 
Secondly, the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) applies to commercial companies and limits their ability to collect personal information from children under the age of 13. By default, advertising is turned off in 191 Apps. No personal student information is collected for commercial purposes. The district's use of student information is solely for educational purposes.
How will 191 Apps be used for education in my child's school?
There are a number of ways students and teachers will use 191 Apps in classroom work. Perhaps the systems most powerful feature is the ability to share documents among a group of people. With 191 Apps, a team of students can work together to create a report or other classwork. They can each make edits or post comments to the document that other team members can see. When the document is ready to be turned in, they can simply share it with their teacher, who can also make comments directly on the document that the team members can see.
As time goes by, each school and each teacher will also discover what works best for them and for their students.
Can I opt out for my student?
We want you to be involved with your student's education. To discuss how 191 Apps will be used at your child's school, please call your school. A delegate from the school will be happy to answer your questions and help you to understand your options.  
If you still feel it would be best for your child not to utilize these tools, the delegate will make sure that your student's account is deactivated. 
What happens if a student misuses his or her 191 Apps account?
The same expectations for acceptable use of technology apply to 191 Apps for Education accounts. Students who misuse their accounts will be referred to their school's administrator who will deal with any infraction on a case-by-case basis. Administrators may choose to suspend student access to 191 Apps for a length of time appropriate to the offense. Parents will be notified should their student's account access be altered or suspended.
Related Resources
District Policy IIBG - Internet and Electronic Communication Acceptable Use and Safety Policy (coming)