EXCLUSIVE: Technology at School is Valuable, Challenging; VPN’s Pose New Discussions, Decisions

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EXCLUSIVE: Technology at School is Valuable, Challenging; VPN’s Pose New Discussions, Decisions

David-Jared Matthews, Reporter

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SENIOR HOUSE – Technology serves as a tool and challenge for modern schools.  Stanwich is no exception.  In addition to a tool and learning gadget, computers have become a game of tug of war with regulations and possibilities as the two sides.

Clearly, the purpose of school computers is for students to use them productively, thus, parameters are put in place to ensure this.  However, some students have found a way around such parameters and are using their computers for non-school related purposes.

Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) allow students, if they choose to use them while clearly circumventing rules, to do and access whatever they want on their school computers.

The Tech department is of course able to monitor students’ computer usage and has recently been watching closely.  They found that some students are off task in class, as evidenced by their computer history.

This finding was brought to the attention of the Senior House students during an assembly the week of February 4th.  Mr. Ramahlo, Director of Technology, came and spoke to students telling them to delete any VPNs that they have on their school computers.  There was an “amnesty” period in place so students could avoid consequences.

“You have the power to do whatever you want to do on that machine, but with it comes responsibilities,” Mr. Ramahlo told The Post.  “VPNs exist in order to create secure, private tunnels across networks…Students should keep in mind that computer and technology use at school is intended to supplement and augment traditional classroom learning, not serve as a distraction from learning.”

School computer use is monitored which is made clear at September orientation sessions.

If a student is in a free period, they are allowed to be unproductive – within reason, but VPN’s still fall outside that domain.

Story by David-Jared Matthews, Reporter

Edited by Maeve Sebold, Editor in Chief

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