The final highlight of EGUSD’s 2012-1203 digital citizenship initiative was provided by Valley High School seniors Joyce Joseph and Frendely Vang. On the evening before their graduation, they accepted an invitation from the NWP Radio Talk Show to address a national audience on the importance of practicing active citizenship, both online and face-to-face.

Joseph and Vang joined NWP Talk Show host Paul Oh, Common Sense Media Education Program Manager Merve Lapus, Executive Director of the California Writing Project Jayne Marlink, and EGUSD Technology Services Technology Integration Specialist Gail Desler to provide a student perspective on California’s first Digital Citizenship Month, which took place in May.

“Although we can teach students e-Rate requirements such as respecting intellectual property and protecting online privacy, cyberbullying awareness and response is in a different category,” Desler said. “Our students have to step up and be the change, a challenge Joyce Joseph and Frendely Vang willingly take on.”

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California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris recently stated, “Online space is the schoolyard of the 21st century, and it’s up to teachers, experts, and advocates to ensure that students are prepared.”

“Throughout the 2012-2013 school year, we have witnessed the positive impact of students teaching students and could easily make the case for adding “students themselves” to Harris’s list of who is responsible for teaching digital citizenship,” Desler said. “As we head into the 2013-2014 school year, we look forward to highlighting new student-led digital citizenship accomplishments.”

Common Sense Media recently featured Valley High School seniors Joyce Joseph and Frendely Vang’s efforts to be the change through the #UnfollowBullying campaign.  Link to the article here.  The national nonprofit Common Sense Media’s mission is to improve “the lives of kids and families by providing the trustworthy information, education, and independent voice they need to thrive in a world of media and technology.”  EGUSD uses Common Sense Media curriculum and videos in elementary, middle and high schools as part of its Digital Citizenship program.