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Use of Videos and Films - August 2004 Revision

Criteria for Use of Videos, DVDs and Other Instructional Media

For the use of videos, DVDs, and other instructional media other than those borrowed from the District Multi Media Library, consider the following

  1. Capacity of the video, DVD, or instructional media to support the curriculum.
  2. Capacity to reach the personal interest level and ability of students.
  3. Importance of the subject matter.
  4. Compliance with all copyright laws and regulations
  5. Age appropriateness using Motion Picture Association of America guidelines where applicable and reviews from other recognized sources.
  6. The "track record" of the video/DVD based on previous instructional use.

Procedures for Using All Videos/DVDs and Other Instructional Media

  1. Teachers or other staff members using videos, DVDs, and instructional media will be responsible for following all District procedures and state and federal laws regarding their use. Lesson plans should support valid instructional standards.
  2. Teachers or other staff members wishing to use a video/film from non-district sources will request permission from the principal prior to the planned showing. In granting permission, a committee will be asked to help in the decision making for use of PG videos/DVDs in elementary and middle school,  R-rated videos/DVDs in high school, and potentially controversial videos/DVDs at all levels as follows:

    Elementary Committee: This committee will be, at a minimum, comprised of the teacher requesting the use of the video/DVD, the appropriate grade level chairperson, a parent appointed by the school’s Instructional Council chairperson, and the principal or designee.

    Middle School Committee: This committee will be, at a minimum, comprised of the teacher requesting use of the video/DVD, the content area team leader, a parent appointed by the school’s Instructional Council chairperson, and the principal or designee.

    High School Committee: This committee will, at a minimum, be comprised of the teacher requesting use of the video/DVD, the appropriate department chairperson or team leader, another teacher from that department elected by department members, a parent appointed by the school’s Instructional Council chairperson, and the principal or designee.

  3. The committee will review the use of the video/DVD using criteria outlined in the preceding section, and will in that context consider the video’s/DVD’s effect on local community standards, the instructional goals and learning outcomes hoped to be achieved through use of the video/DVD, and the availability of other instructional materials that could meet these goals. The committee will present recommendations to the principal.
  4. If it is established that a student or parent/guardian objects as a matter of principle to the viewing of a particular video/DVD, a meaningful alternative, related activity will be assigned without penalty or embarrassment to the student.

Additional Procedures for Use of Videos/DVDs Rated by the Motion Picture Association of America

The ratings used by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) will be but one consideration in connection with the other selection criteria. If using an MPAA rated video/DVD, the following additional guidelines must also be followed:

Parents/guardians will receive one week advanced written notice when teachers plan to use commercial video/DVD recordings that are rated PG with elementary students, PG 13 with middle school students or R with high school students. Such notice will include an accurate description of the contents of the video/DVD recording and where it may be obtained/rented for parent/guardian review. Teachers must notify the school’s principal at least 10 days in advance of showing a PG 13 or R rated video/DVD.

  1. G - No signed permission form is necessary.
  2. PG - A signed parental permission form is required for students under age 13. If requested for use in an elementary school, the principal will ask a committee to review the use of the video/DVD prior to granting permission.
  3. PG 13 - A signed parental permission form is required for students under age 14. If requested for use in a middle school, the principal will ask a committee to review the use of the video/DVD prior to granting permission. (Use of PG 13 videos/DVDs is limited to middle and high schools.)
  4. R - A signed parental permission form is required for all students. The principal will ask a committee to review the proposed video/DVD before granting permission. (Use of R-videos/DVDs is limited to high schools only.)
  5. NC 17 - Use of videos/DVDs rated NC 17 by the Motion Picture Association of America is prohibited.

Additional Procedures for Use of Non-Rated Videos/DVDs

Non-rated videos/DVDs obtained from District Multi Media Library may be used without parental notification or permission unless there is doubt about the age appropriateness of the content. A teacher who proposes to use a video/DVD for an audience other than the age group recommended in the DMML listing should consult the principal. Non-rated videos/DVDs obtained from sources outside the District may be used without parental notification or permission if descriptive information from recognized sources indicates that the content and intended audience are appropriate. The school library and DMML are sources of reviews from recognized organizations. If there is doubt, a committee should be convened according to the guidelines listed above.

A permission form including descriptive information about the video/DVD is required if there is any doubt about the appropriateness of the video/DVD.

Videos/DVDs of student performances may be shown if they meet the instructional criteria listed in "Criteria for Use" above.

If a non-rated video or DVD has been approved by a review committee, the same video or DVD may be used in subsequent months or school years if the intended instructional use is the same as that presented to the original committee.  However, videos/DVDs used to support human sexuality and aids instruction must be reviewed at least every other year or when significant changes are made in instructional delivery.  If the age group or lesson plan changes, the video/DVD must be reviewed for intended context.

Alternative Assignments

Alternative assignments must consist of useful work related to valid instructional goals. They may not be punitive or burdensome in length of time or type of work required.

Parents may be asked to assist in designing an alternative assignment.

Forms:

  • Parental Permission for Student Viewing of PG Videos and DVDs – Elementary School Level
  • Parental Permission for Student Viewing of PG 13 Videos and DVDS – Middle School Level
  • Parental Permission for Student Viewing of R Rated Videos and DVDs – High School Level
  • Parental Permission for Student Viewing of Non-Rated Videos and DVDs

Cross Ref.: Board Policy I.09: Teaching About Controversial or Sensitive Issues

NSBA/NEPN Classification: IJL

Revised:    May 1995
Revised
:    April 1996
Revised
:    May 1997
Revised
:    August 2004

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