DELMAR — The Bethlehem Central School District and Gaggle announced a partnership to help support student online safety and well-being when using Google Workspace for Education.
Bethlehem Central will use the Gaggle Safety Management solution to continue to ensure students are safely and properly using school-provided devices and digital tools. The partnership was announced during the district’s school board meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 18.
“It is important for parents to know of the proactive steps the district has in place to support students when they are using district-owned devices and online resources,” said BC Chief Technology Officer Erin Sheevers.
Gaggle uses a combination of artificial intelligence and trained safety experts to review students’ use of online tools within the district’s Google Workspace for Education to provide real-time analysis and alerts to schools of potentially concerning behavior or content.
Gaggle’s technology scans students’ accounts for harmful content and alerts school officials if students show signs of self-harm, depression, thoughts of suicide, substance abuse, cyberbullying, credible threats of violence against others, or other harmful situations. With Gaggle, the district is better equipped to proactively identify students who are struggling, provide support where needed, and foster a safer school environment.
The district has multiple modes of filtering and monitoring in place to protect students and staff. Gaggle meets the district’s Acceptable Use Policy/Regulation and Internet Safety Policy/Regulation. It also meets the requirements of the federal Children’s Internet Protection Act and are NYS Ed Law 2-d compliant.
“We are here to help students and families but we are keenly aware that much of a child’s online activity takes place on family-owned devices,” Sheevers said. “That is why it is critical for parents to keep an open line of communication with their children on how to protect themselves online and be respectful digital citizens.”