The Hardin County Sheriff’s Office will soon start a new initiative called “Digital Citizenship for Today’s Kids” for Kindergarten through 12th-grade students in Hardin County Schools.
“This partnership will allow students, their parents and our community to have a deeper understanding of how to communicate in today’s digital world,” Hardin County Sheriff John Ward said. “This age-appropriate curriculum will teach students that proper digital citizenship is important and that not everything you see and read is appropriate to share. Lessons also cover the effects of vaping, drug use, distracted driving, inappropriate phone apps and other dangers that children could find in today’s dangerous world.”
The curriculum is called Digital Futures Initiatives (DFI) and is supported by the National Association of School Resource Officers. It is developed for grades K-12 by teachers and SROs and helps children and families navigate through the avoidance of various societal dangers. Hardin County Schools and the Hardin County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) learned about the initiative in July. Since that time, the HCSO has been training its officers and HCS has been planning for its implementation.
DFI defines its mission as one that “empowers educators, parents and communities with informative, useful resources and solutions to help guide today’s digitally connected youth on making better decisions, mitigating new world risks and using the power of digital devices and social media for their benefits.”
Some schools are planning a parent session. Those plans will be shared at a later date. HCSO officers will implement the curriculum at all HCS schools.
“We truly appreciate the Hardin County Sheriff’s Office investment in our students,” Hardin County Schools Superintendent Teresa Morgan said. “The deputies come into classrooms and talk about real-world issues and how to avoid the dangers they bring. They also build positive relationships with students that lead to open lanes of communication. The program also reinforces that law enforcement officers exist to help us all lead successful lives. We are grateful for Sheriff Ward and his dedication to student safety.”
The program comes at a cost of $0 to Hardin County Schools.