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PEPPERELL — Superintendent of Schools James McCormick would like to inform you about potential student involvement in social networking sites due to a recent incident in one of our towns and in a neighboring community.

The administration is concerned about the overall safety and well-being of its students in cyberspace at home. Social networking sites including myspace.com, facebook.com, livejournal.com and xanga.com allow teenagers to communicate by means on online journals, internal e-mail, and Web forums.

Many students view online communication as harmless and are unaware of the pitfalls of such opens forums. They create the equivalent of online diaries accessible to anyone with an Internet connection, including online predators. Some students even go as far as to post personal information about themselves and their family members including full names, addresses, pictures, schools and places of employment.

The media has documented numerous incidents across Massachusetts of students who have put themselves in dangerous situations due to their involvement in social networking.

We are hoping that a joint effort between the North Middlesex Regional School District and the parents can prevent such incidents. Together we can continue to insure that we make children sage from the “ills of society.”

Know that we are committed to the online safety of our students. Our professional duty is to take appropriate action steps to block access to social networking Web sites within our schools, and we have done so.

Discuss with your children whether or not they use social networking Web sites, and become aware of the content they are posting for all to read.

In the near future we will be addressing these issues with our students during school assemblies along with the town Police Departments.

If you have any questions, call your child’s school and speak to the technology specialist in the building.

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