SOURCE: Web Wise Kids

Web Wise Kids

June 16, 2009 15:00 ET

Web Wise Kids Applauds House Passage of Legislation Supporting Funding for Internet Safety Education

ORANGE COUNTY, CA and WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - June 16, 2009) - Web Wise Kids applauds House passage today of legislation clarifying that funding through the Department of Education's Enhancing Education Through Technology Program (EETT) can be spent on Internet safety education for kids.

"We applaud House passage of H.R. 780 and thank Congressman Adam Putnam for his leadership in sponsoring the legislation," said Web Wise Kids CEO Judi Westberg Warren. "Although Web Wise Kids has always believed that schools should be encouraged to use the EETT program to support Internet safety education, this bill provides important clarification that funding under this program should be used to develop and implement programs that promote safe Internet use."

The primary goal of the EETT program, commonly known as the "Ed Tech" program, is to improve student academic achievement through the use of technology in schools. It is also designed to ensure that every student is technologically literate by the end of eighth grade and encourage the effective integration of technology with teacher training. Under the Ed Tech program, the Department of Education provides grants to State Educational Agencies (SEAs) on the basis of their proportionate share of funding under Title I. States may retain up to 5 percent of their allocations for State-level activities, and must distribute one-half of the remainder by formula to eligible local educational agencies (LEAs) and the other one-half competitively to eligible local entities.

"The time has arrived for Congress to move swiftly to pass comprehensive Internet safety education legislation," added Warren. "Web Wise Kids reaffirms our support for legislation sponsored by Senator Robert Menendez and Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz that would provide critical resources to America's educational infrastructure to train educators in online risk prevention and empower students and parents with hands-on opportunities to use technology safely for generations to come."

The Menendez-Wasserman Schultz bill, S. 1047, would establish a competitive Internet safety education grant program for state and local education agencies and non-profit organizations to promote the safe use of digital technologies. The legislation authorizes over $175 million over five years for the grant program, which will be administered by the U.S. Department of Justice in collaboration with the Departments of Education and Health & Human Services. The grants would also provide much-needed professional development training to educators so they have tools to teach children safely use the Internet.

About Web Wise Kids

Web Wise Kids is a national non-profit organization dedicated to preventing online child victimization by providing innovative tools to assist youth to stay safe online. Web Wise Kids implements interactive Internet safety programs nationwide in conjunction with school systems, law enforcement, teachers, community-based youth organizations and others. The Web Wise Kids products were chosen to participate in the federal initiative Project Safe Childhood. Web Wise Kids programs have reached over six million children and thousands of parents nationwide. For more information, visit www.webwisekids.org or call + 1 714-435-2885.

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