Social Media and Online Safety

Jordan/Jackson Special Edition Newsletter - 1/7/22

Dear Families,

Last year we sent this newsletter as a resource to families as their children become more active online and gain access to mobile devices. This newsletter was developed in collaboration with parents and teachers who served on our School Council. We hope that you find the information valuable and are able to refer to the resources over time.

John Nieratko


Social Media - Underaged Usage

Under the US law, COPPA (Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998) it illegal to collect or store the personal information of children under the age of thirteen. By definition, social media platforms collect and store users’ personal information. Therefore, under their terms and agreements, they prohibit individuals under the age of thirteen from setting up accounts. It follows that for an underaged child to access an account, they must either obtain parental permission or falsify their age when opening accounts on their own.

In addition to the collection of personal information on children, there are scientific reasons behind the age restriction. In this article from the American Psychological Association, "social media platforms like Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, and Snapchat have provided crucial opportunities for interaction that are a normal part of development—especially during a time of severe isolation prompted by the pandemic. But they’ve also been increasingly linked to mental health problems, including anxiety, depressive symptoms, and body image concerns."

Digital Citizenship Lessons

Each school year, our Digital Learning Team implements digital citizenship lessons with our students, courtesy of Common Sense Media. Below are some of the topics covered this year:

Grade 3

The Power Of Words: A lesson on how to react when someone uses mean or hurtful language on the internet.

Your Rings of Responsibility: A lesson on how a good digital citizen takes responsibility for themselves, their communities, and their world.

Grade 4

Private & Personal Information: A lesson on what information about you is okay to share online.

Be a Super Digital Citizen: A lesson on ways to be an upstander when we see cyberbullying.

Grade 5

Finding My Media Balance: A lesson on using media in a way that feels healthy and in balance with other life activities.

Is it Cyberbullying?: A lesson on what cyberbullying is and what you can do to stop it.

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