• Loudoun County Public Schools is concerned about the safety of its students in and out of the classroom. This concern extends to what students are doing online. Parents should actively monitor their children’s use of the Internet. To help parents keep children safe on the Internet, LCPS offers the following safety tips that have been compiled from sources such as the Polly Klaas Foundation and the Center for Missing and Exploited Children:

    • Never allow children to give out identifying information such as home address, school name, or telephone number.
    • Never allow your child to arrange a face-to-face meeting with someone via the Internet.
    • Decide whether you want personal information such as age, personal interests, or photographs to be revealed. Posting pictures online is especially dangerous because images of children can be sent electronically by one predator to another who might live closer to the child. Once an image goes onto the Internet it is there forever in some form that can be accessed.
    • Never respond to messages that are suggestive, obscene, threatening, or make you or your child uncomfortable. By replying you are verifying a valid e-mail address to the sender, and that information can be used to encourage a person who may send inappropriate messages or put you on even more e-mail lists.
    • If you or your children become aware of the transmission of child pornography, report it to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-843-5678 or the Web site www.cybertipline.com. This site is run by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and has links to report every kind of crime.
    • Remember that people online may not be who they say they are.
    • Remember everything you read may not be true.
    • Remember that personal computers and online services should not be used as electronic babysitters.
    • Stay away from chatrooms that get into subjects associated with sex or cults or groups that do potentially dangerous things. Be particularly suspicious of anyone who tries to turn you against your parents, guardians, teachers or friends.
    • Choose an e-mail or chatroom name that doesn’t let people know if you’re male or female. Make sure the name doesn’t mean something that may encourage others to bother you.