Letters to the editor for Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015

Teach accountability, not to avoid responsibility

The parents of children attending Carson City public schools are now required to sign two agreements, one acknowledging that fundamental teaching activities at the school are now a “privilege,” rather than a right, and that we will “indemnify” (this means to pay back) the entire district and all of its employees for any losses that occur due to the normal use of their computers and networks.

We are required to agree that the district is not responsible for lost data, failed deliveries, or interruptions of service. Even if they are responsible.

You are required to agree that you will be held financially liable for any damage to the district’s electronic network resource, even if such damage happens as a result of your, or your child’s, normal and required interaction with the network, but through no fault of your own.

The above is a brief summation from two documents we were all asked to sign before our children could receive their computers, and do the normal and routine class work that uses them.

I don’t object to being liable for malicious misuse. Children ought to be held responsible for their misdeeds (as should we all). But we have been required to sign an acknowledgement that ordinary school functions are now a privilege, and no longer a right, and that any damage from normal use, or even the actions of others, will be charged to the parent.

We should be teaching accountability, not how to use lawyers to avoid responsibility.

Don Peterson

Carson City


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