Understanding Law Enforcement’s Role in Student Online Safety

Student safety shouldn’t just be the responsibility of one person inside a school or district. Ongoing conversations should take place between technology teams, administration, faculty and even law enforcement about how to protect students from cyberbullying, self-harm, drug or alcohol use, pornography and other harmful situations.

The role of these individuals was the theme of last week’s Gaggle webcast, “Backpacks, Browsers and Badges: Law Enforcement’s Role in Online Student Safety,” which welcomed Chief Ian Moffett from the Miami-Dade Schools Police Department and Sarah Trimble-Oliver, CIO at Cincinnati Public Schools.

Andrea Keith from Gaggle got the webcast underway, covering topics such as the growth of law enforcement presence in our schools, statistics regarding violence in schools, and the role Gaggle plays alongside law enforcement agencies like the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and the Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force.

Chief Moffett’s presentation then covered three main areas:

  • Network infrastructure: including how Miami-Dade County Public Schools handles network cyber threats.
  • Investigation assistance: for instance, how his police officers use laptops and other technology to access records management, file reports and keep students safe.
  • Campus Shield Initiative: an information-based, proactive approach to school safety facilitated through a three-year grant.

“We’re looking for early warning signs,” said Chief Moffett. “The goal is to make better decisions as to what is transpiring on our campuses.”

Chief Moffett also provided examples of school safety strategies as well as specific cases he has dealt with during his tenure as chief of police at the fourth largest school district in the country (viewer discretion is advised).

The webcast concluded with Sarah Trimble Oliver describing how Cincinnati Public Schools uses various technology, holds assemblies, and how the district works with school resource officers to keep students safe. “There’s a level of collaboration between the officers and our IT staff,” she said. 

Both presenters also discussed how, and when, law enforcement gets involved in items that require further action that come from Gaggle Safety Representatives.    

You can watch the “Backpacks, Browsers and Badges: Law Enforcement’s Role in Online Student Safety” webcast on-demand by scrolling to the section entitled “Archived Webcasts (2017).”

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