For our final project my group and I decided to tackle a TRUA (Technology Responsible Use Agreement). We have one at my school and we had one at my previous school. There are a lot of similarities between the two and for us the most obvious was that they are sent home on a nondescript piece of white paper to be scribbled on and brought back to school. There is no real way to be sure that anyone actually took the time to read what they were agreeing to. Our solution to this was to create a form that required a mouse click to agree to each provision in the acceptable use policy. Our hope was to slow down the process slightly to encourage the respondent to take a brief moment to read what it was they were agreeing to. We divided the policy up into different sections and added an educational piece to help demonstrate why this particular part of the agreement was important. Our hope is to have parents and students buy into the agreement as an important part of protecting not only our school network and resources but also their privacy, their work as students and their BYOD equipment.
An advantage of having students complete the TRUA as a form is that tabulation of who has and has not completed the agreement is in an easy to access spreadsheet. At my previous school students could not access the school network until they had completed the agreement.
One of the biggest challenges we faced was finding someone outside of our school to work with. Since we had to work with someone near and someone far I chose someone very near to me; my wife Meeka. We used the power of Google+ to reach out to try to find a partner and Tara Waudby agreed to work with us. Working in a collaborative team brought a greater wealth of experiences and knowledge. I think that all members of the team were able to benefit from those new ideas. I know that I did. With busy and different schedules we were not able to choose a time to meet as one entire group but I don’t feel like we were hampered or slowed down because of it. Each member had a chance to give input and changes were made based on that input.
One of our discussion points was how to involve parents in this process in a more meaningful way. The forms we have at our schools require parent signature as well as student signature. We felt that we could assure that the student was completing the form by forcing them to log into a school account to access the form. This feature is not in place right now so that our form is open for other COETAILers to see. In order to insure that parents have also been a part of the process we added a very short parent form which simply asks that parents acknowledge reviewing the TRUA with their child. Upon completion of the student form a link is given that takes parents to the parent form for them to complete. Tara also suggested adding an interactive element to the process by having families create a Telligami or a short video their most important take away from the agreement. Both parent and student had to take part. The biggest challenge was that we were not able to find a way for them to upload it to the form. Our solution was to have them post it to a social media site of their choice or to save it to their Google Drive account and then share the link on the parent form.