Ninth-graders at Massapequa High School’s Ames Campus learned about the responsible use of social media during a workshop on Nov. 21. They heard from Katie Schumaker, founder of the Don’t Press Send Campaign and author of cyber education book “Don’t Press Send.”
Schumaker told students that before they post something online, they should first ask themselves if it is thoughtful, helpful, inspiring, necessary and kind. She warned them that there is no privacy online and to avoid posting any information they wouldn’t want a stranger to know. Additionally, she touched on cyber bullying and spoke of the ramifications of sending explicit messages and photos.
Students also learned about healthy cell phone habits, and were encouraged to turn their phones off when they are doing their homework. After speaking to the entire student body, Schumaker held small group discussions with class officers and members of the Active Minds and Chief’s Challenge clubs. All ninth-graders went home with cyber safety sheets, and an evening program was held for parents.
“Every student uses some form of social media, and the purpose of this program was to teach them how to use it responsibly,” said Principal Jordan McCaw. “It is important to create an awareness that what they say and send can have real consequences. I think Ms. Schumaker’s words made an impact.”