Digital Classroom Policy
Policy Letter for
YWP Digital Writing Classrooms
Your school is partnering with the Young Writers Project (YWP), a Vermont nonprofit, to bring you an exciting opportunity to improve your writing -- a Digital Writing Classroom. This Web-based, secure site is designed to help you develop your writing skills and improve your digital literacy. You and your fellow classmates will use this site to post your homework, share additional work, give and receive constructive feedback, upload multimedia and engage in collaborative digital learning projects.
The majority of the Web site is "closed," meaning it is accessible only to you, teachers, designated school officials and several folks from YWP. All students are given usernames with their firstname and last initial and no personal information is kept on this site.
From time to time, your best work may be published on the front page of the site for the public to see, but you will not be identified.
How it works
This site gives you an audience for your work -- your peers and teacher(s). You will be asked to post completed homework on it, as well as to share additional work or work on projects. From time to time, you will do school classwork on the site. Your teachers will post assignments on the site with due dates shown on the Class Events calendar.
Peer feedback is a vital aspect of this site and you will be expected to comment on your classmates' work on a regular basis in a civil and constructive manner.
You will learn how to embed Web links and upload digital images, audio and video in your work as appropriate. From time to time your class or teacher will select exceptional work to be posted on the front page or to be submitted to school Web sites or publications.
Your username will be your first name and last initial. Your real email address will not be used and no personal information is kept on this site. You will be given guidance to follow good Web safety practices such as to not reveal personal information such as email addresses, telephone numbers and addresses online.
You and your teachers are encouraged to submit exceptional work to the Young Writers Project for possible external publication. If you do send in work to be considered, YWP requires that it be accompanied by your real name, school name and grade. If your work is selected it may be published in newspapers, on radio and/or on YWP's Web site, youngwritersproject.org. You will be notified in advance if your work is selected for external publication.
A major part of Web security is civility, and you will be expected to behave in an appropriate manner on the site. This site is an extension of your classroom.
Your work will be assessed according to your school's normal rubrics for performance: quality of work, effort, initiative, growth, etc. In addition, you may be graded on the quality and quanitity of your commenting on your classmates' work.
YWP is committed to helping students write better. To that end, we reserve the right to conduct independent studies of students’ attitudes toward writing, the impact of YWP resources, and improvements in the quality of student writing submissions to the site. You therefore may be asked periodically to complete online surveys and respond to writing prompts for program evaluation purposes. Research findings and reports that result from data collection will protect the privacy, confidentiality and identity of our students.
Before your child may begin work on this Web classroom, we are asking you and your child to discuss and sign the following form. Please return it to your child's teacher:
- Parents agree to let their students access this Web site at school and at home, when possible.
- Students using this site are expected to act safely by keeping personal information out of their posts. Students agree not to post their own or others' telephone number, email address, home address and any other personal, sensitive information.
- This online writing classroom is an extension of the school. Students agree to behave under the same rules that govern their regular classroom, including their language and behavior on the site. Civility and respect for others is the primary guide for conduct.
- Students are encouraged to express themselves freely but must understand that some constraints may be placed by the teacher as appropriate.
- Students agree that all comments they place on another student's work are respectful, constructive and sensitive. Students should not post a comment they wouldn't want to receive.
- Students agree to take care of the computers they are using. They agree that if they start using a computer and find that someone else is still logged on that they will immediately log that other person off the site. (If the person is around, ask, as a courtesy, to make sure no work has been lost.)
- Students who do not abide by these terms and conditions may lose their opportunity to participate in this project.
- When students submit or have teachers submit a piece of their work to the YWP, the students agree to have their work published by the YWP in partner media outlets with their real names used. To submit work, a teacher or student must register on youngwritersproject.org. A student under age 13 must have parental permission to register on the site. For more information and a permission form, go to youngwritersproject.org/node/750.
- Parents understand that their child may be asked periodically to complete online surveys and writing prompts to assist in the evaluation of YWP programs and resources.
I have read and understood these terms and conditions. I agree to uphold them.
Student's signature: ________________________________________ Date:________________
Parent's signature: _________________________________________ Date: ________________