Per federal and state law, CUSD is required to have an Internet filter in place to block inappropriate or harmful materials from students. No Internet filter is perfect: just as many sites "sneak through" the filter even though they are inappropriate, many sites are also blocked that have significant educational value (and are appropriate for our educational community).
When you believe that a educationally valuable and appropriate website is being blocked on our district network, please complete the CUSD Website Unblocking Request form. This site will be examined by district staff, and if it is deemed appropriate, it will be unblocked as quickly as possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
There's a great (and totally appropriate) website that I've read about ... why it is blocked on our network?
Our filter works by putting websites into categories, and then those categories are blocked or unblocked for different authorized users on our network. While the district can decide which categories to block, the categorization of specific websites is done entirely by our filtering company without district input. With millions of websites on the Internet, the only way for us to know if a website should be unblocked is to submit an unblocking request.
Even if a website does not contain objectionable content, it may use so much bandwidth that it affects the performance of our network for all district users. In these cases, even websites that are not normally blocked by the filter may be manually blocked by IS.
A website that I used yesterday without any problems is now blocked today. Why did this happen?
Our web filtering company will occasionally recategorize websites without notifying us. If the website's new category is being blocked, the website will be blocked when the category is changed. Because we cannot possibly know when all of these category changes are made, we rely on teachers and staff to submit unblocking requests when this happens. If the site was previously unblocked, be sure to mention that when submitting your request.
Keep in mind that just because a website isn't accessible doesn't mean it's blocked. There may be issues with our network or even with the website itself that may be causing the site to not load properly. Be sure to verify that the site is really being blocked by our filter before submitting an unblocking request (a good way to check is to try to load the site on your smartphone using your cellular data).
I want my students to build a website for a class project, but they can't use SchoolWires and I can't find any online website builders that aren't blocked for students. What should I do?
Unblocking online website builders for students is problematic, because obviously anyone can use them to put content on the web, and that content may or may not be inappropriate. However, we have taken steps to make using one of the more popular website builders more accessible for teachers and students.
Weebly and all websites ending in weebly.com are currently unblocked for teachers only. Teachers also have the ability to sign up and use a Weebly for Education account at education.weebly.com. Once you create a Weebly for Education account, you can then create student accounts ... and once your students each have a student account, they will be able to build their site by logging on at students.weebly.com, which is unblocked for students. This setup allows us to unblock the part of Weebly that students would need to build a site while blocking inappropriate content that might be on other Weebly sites, and also makes it easier for you as the teacher to manage your students' sites.