Important CIPA policy revisions from the FCC

The FCC order regarding school CIPA policy revisions is in the links above.  Please note the sections starting on page 4.  The important hi-lites are:

p.4 – Schools must update their policies to reflect implement instruction to students regarding appropriate online behavior, especially social networking interaction and cyberbullying.  States and localities will set specific rules, definitions, and curricula. 

p.5 – for CIPA purposes, the definition of “schools” is left up to the states, as opposed to the E-rate definition based on NCLB criteria. 

p.8 – agrees with the SECA appeal on behalf of Jennings (Carlos’ client) regarding allowing students access to social networking sites through the CIPA filter – SECA maintained this is a local decision, and the FCC now agrees.

p.8-9 – reiterated requirement for spot reviews of CIPA policies.

P.9 – clarified that the 5-year clock for maintaining CIPA documents starts with the end of the latest funding year an applicant applied for funds.  Actually, it could be more than that – if you receive IC funding for a project delayed until after the end of a funding year, the 5-year clock would not start until the service delivery date for that delayed IC project.  The 5-year retention clock is not dependent upon when the policy was approved or the filter installed, etc.

p.9 – on a positive note, the public notice of a meeting to address the CIPA policy only applies to the initial policy implementation.  Once a meeting has been held on a policy, further public meetings are not required for subsequent changes.

p.10 – if a school is missing a required item on its policy but is following correct practices, USAC must allow the school to correct the policy.  This holds for other minor policy infractions.

p.11 – the FCC will address application of CIPA to laptop and cell phone direct access to the internet from within a school or library.  Good luck on that.  This is a growing concern with companies such as Verizon making huge package deals with districts to sell them laptops or iPads at deep discounts and provide filtered within the school internet service to each individual device. 

p.14-17 – you might want to scan some of the definitions (some of which are mentioned above).