Office of the Attorney General
Attorney General Conway & CyberSafeKY Announce Back to School Safety Initiatives

Press Release Date:  Monday, October 05, 2009  
Contact Information:  Allison Gardner Martin
Communications Director
502-696-5651 (office)
 


Attorney General Jack Conway and the Kentucky Department of Education today announced at a press conference held at the Simon House in Frankfort that ConnectKentucky will be joining their Internet safety partnership, CybersafeKY. ConnectKentucky is a non-profit organization that implements strategies for technology deployment, use and literacy in Kentucky. The CybersafeKY partnership will be expanding and launching new programs this school year to educate parents and help keep children safe.

"As parents and students get back into the swing of a new school year, it's more important than ever before to talk about the dangers that exist online," General Conway said. "Since 2008, we've visited more than 100 schools and presented our cybersafety message to 24,000 people. We've done a tremendous job getting the word out to kids, now we're reaching out to parents to educate them about the dangers that exist online."

The partnership is hosting two free regional parent workshops to instruct parents about how to use technology and monitor activity on the Internet. The workshops will be on October 15 from 6 – 7:30 p.m. (EDT) at the Hazard Community and Technical College – First Federal Building, Ballroom, and on October 22 from 6-7:30 p.m. (CDT) at Western Kentucky University – Kentucky Building, Kentucky Room.

ConnectKentucky is providing 50 wireless printers donated by Lexmark as door prizes – 25 will be given away at each event. Parents may register at www.ag.ky.gov/cybersafety.

"CybersafeKY and Computers 4 Kids work hand-in-hand – providing parents, teachers and kids with the technology and instruction for safe use of on-line resources," said René True, executive director of ConnectKentucky. "The partnership between ConnectKentucky, the Kentucky Attorney General's Office, the Kentucky Department of Education and our private partners, ensures Kentucky children have the technology resources necessary to compete in a global economy, while providing a safe environment for our kid's on-line activities through cybersafety education and awareness programs."

A parent safety video is also now available online at http://ag.ky.gov/multimedia/video.htm. The video, which is about 10 minutes long, is a quick and easy way for parents and children to learn the basics of Internet safety. It is a revealing look at what activities students are engaging in online and what parents need to know to protect their children.

In addition, the Office of the Attorney General has taped a cybersafety education presentation that will be webcast to all school superintendents from across the Commonwealth in November.

"Education technology adds great instructional value for students and teachers; however, while accessing and using these tools, they must be savvy about the nine elements of being a good digital citizen," said David Couch, associate commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Education's Office of Education Technology. "Those include digital security (self-protection); digital health and wellness; digital literacy; and digital etiquette. CybersafeKY is an excellent vehicle to provide resources and information to help provide a safe Web environment for children, and we welcome ConnectKentucky to the partnership."

http://www.digitalcitizenship.net/Nine_Elements.html

Connect Kentucky's "Computers 4 Kids" Donates PC's to Three Community Groups

As part of today's announcement, ConnectKentucky donated 20 computers and printers, sponsored by the AT&T Foundation and Lexmark, to three community groups that are helping educate and protect Frankfort's youth and families in crisis.

As part of the CybersafeKY partnership, the Office of the Attorney General will conduct cybersafety trainings at each of the three facilities after the new computers from ConnectKentucky arrive.

The donations were made possible thanks to a $10,000 grant from the AT&T Foundation. This is part of a $150,000 grant from the AT&T Foundation that has donated computers to more than 20 non-profit organizations in Kentucky.

"We applaud Attorney General Conway, Connect Kentucky and the Kentucky Department of Education for their commitment to cybersafety," said AT&T Kentucky President Mary Pat Regan. "Education is the focus of the AT&T Foundation, and we continually strive to support efforts focused on promoting online safety to students, parents and educators."

Recipients of today's donations include: The King Center, a non-profit group that provides educational activities, assistance for underprivileged young people and community outreach; the Thornhill Center, a non-profit that helps prepare individuals for GED and college entrance exams and teaches parenting and English classes; and the Simon House, a shelter that offers help to any woman at least 18 years of age who is pregnant or has children up to the age of 12. Simon House provides specific strategies and training designed to develop personal and family stability.

"Everyone at the Simon House is excited about our new computers made possible by the generosity of so many," said Karen Black, director of Simon House. "This will open doors to education and opportunity for all of our residents to continue to improve their lives and those of their children. My hope is that through these computers our families will gain a better understanding of the world around them through the technological advances provided by ConnectKentucky and the AT&T Foundation."

AT&T Foundation, the corporate philanthropy organization of AT&T Inc., supports initiatives that help students throughout the higher education continuum: the successful completion of high school; preparation for and entrance to college; and degree completion and graduation. Additionally, the AT&T Foundation supports organizations and programs that integrate technology into daily classroom instruction and administration activities, develop community and civic leadership and encourage workforce development.