Officers Inspire Students to Be Responsible Digital Citizens

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Students and staff at Shaw Avenue School kicked off Digital Citizenship Week with a visit from the Nassau County 5th Precinct’s Problem Orientated Policing Unit on Oct. 15. Police officers Rita Bopp-Carroll, Jorge Diaz, Ed Eilenberger and Victoria Ojeda spoke to students in grades 4-6 about being responsible on the Internet, signs of cyberbullying and proper social media use. 

With technology more intertwined in our daily lives today than ever before, keeping students aware of the dangers of technology is important. Principal Alejandro Rivera introduced the officers and explained to students why they should pay close attention to the officer’s presentation titled, “Social Media, Responsibility & You.” 

“Each of you has the power and ability to do amazing things using the Internet and technology,” he said. “But you also have the ability to do some serious harm and what we are going to talk about today are the positives and also the potential consequences of making wrong choices while using the Internet and social media tools.” 

During the presentations, the officers highlighted the various popular social media apps, defined what a digital footprint is and stressed the importance of not talking to strangers online, including while playing video games, and giving out personal information. Students were engaged in the presentations as they shared their own experiences and asked the officers questions. The officers also reiterated to the student that what gets posted on the Internet stays there forever and shared with the students what to do if you are being cyberbullied. 

The special visit from the POP unit correlated with the district’s theme of the year, “You and MEdia,” and the district’s strategic plan to “enhance the core curriculum, enabling Valley Stream 30 students to develop 21st-century learning skills that promote life-long learning.” The POP unit will be visiting Forest Road School at a later date to relay these important messages to more students.