Technology at Portage Public Schools
Portage Public Schools believes technology tools and skills are essential for student success. We have made it part of our mission to provide these tools and skills to our students so they may participate responsibly in our 21st century world. To that end, PPS offers each student enrolled in our district access to technology and a network account. This guide serves as an overview of what is included in our offerings as well as participation options.
It is our goal to provide every student with the essential technology and skills they will need to be collaborative, lifelong learners – not only will technology be a topic of instruction, but it will also be used to support and enhance teaching and learning across all grade levels and subjects. Safe and responsible technology use is also embedded as a topic of instruction.
Included Services and Features
Along with a standard network login, a student network account has the following services and features associated with it:
- Internet Access – student network accounts have access to the internet.
- Google Apps for Education – a suite of software tools similar in nature to a typical office productivity suite of applications. These tools allow students to collaborate in real time on research projects, presentations and other class activities.
- Email – student network accounts are linked to a PPS email account. This email account is limited in its use to access curricular and other instructional materials and services from external vendors with whom PPS has partnered. It is also used to provide a safe and secure conduit for electronic communication between students and teachers.
- Web 2.0 Tools – students may create and/or access blogs, wikis and websites.
- Partner Sites – PPS partners with a number of vendors to provide additional content resources and applications. These sites vary by grade level and content. Some examples include: Discovery Education, BrainPop, Prezi, Pearson SuccessNet, and GlobalScholar.
Portage takes student safety seriously. We have regulations, processes and systems designed specifically to protect students as they interact with our network. Protections include:
- a comprehensive Acceptable Use Agreement outlining student responsibilities
- a state of the art web filter set to screen out inappropriate and unsuitable content
- agreements with our 3rd party partners designed to protect student data and privacy
- comprehensive restrictions on the use of student email, including whom the students may send mail to and whom they may receive mail from
- monitoring of student network use
- instruction for students in safe and responsible computer and internet use
Portage recognizes that the internet changes quickly and not every system is foolproof. We routinely review the items listed above to ensure we are doing all we can to protect our students.
Parents/Guardians have the option to opt-out of some or all of the technology options available to their students. We encourage you to discuss these options and their impact on your students with your building principal prior to making a decision in this regard.