Boys Town Offers Tips for Handling School-Issued Computer Equipment

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As the new school year gears up this fall, more students bring school-issued electronic equipment home with them. Boys Town offers some tips for parents on how to manage these laptops and tablets to put these equipment to good use.

School-issued laptops or tablet computers are a great equalizer for kids, but like all powerful tools they need to be treated with respect.

Boys Town releases advice for parents on how to manage school-issued laptop or tablet computers. The devices can be a big help for keeping kids interested in school work, but they can bring some challenges. The national child care organization, started over 90 years ago, offers this advice for helping your kids put their school-issued technology to good use.

1.    Know the school technology policy—read the fine print carefully before you sign, and make sure to go through it, line by line, with your kids.

2.    Make sure you have consequences at home for misuse of the technology—call a family meeting and set your expectations early—with consequences that teach responsibility.

3.    Ask your kids how they plan to keep the laptop safe from harm—will they use a case? How will they avoid theft or damage? Have a definite plan and stick to it.

4.    Set time limits for using the device—help your kids manage their time so they aren’t using the laptop/tablet at all hours of the day or night. Set up a family policy that all devices, school-issued or not, go to the “family charging station”.

5.    Ask your kids to share what they’re doing with their laptop/tablet—enjoy your child’s success and new learning by having them show you the project s they’re creating. That way, everyone learns!

“School-issued laptops or tablet computers are a great equalizer for kids,” said Laura Buddenberg, Boys Town Training Manager. “Everyone has the same technology and opportunities, and that’s great for kids. Like all powerful tools, though, they need to be treated with respect and responsibility.”

Boys Town counsels families and schools across the country on best parenting and discipline practices. These strategies incorporate those teachings and can be used for effective parenting in the home. You can find more information at http://www.parenting.org. The Boys Town National Hotline also offers free advice to parents 24/7 - call 1-800-448-3000.

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Kara Neuverth
Boys Town
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