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Headshot Young Girl

Laurie Guyon


United States

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I am often asked to come to schools to teach students about their social media presence and how it is tied to their mental health and to discuss cybersecurity with our youth. When I discuss these huge topics with students, I often hear their frustration about how they use technology differently at home and in school. The lack of a safe space to showcase students' global contributions underscores the difficulty in harnessing their full potential to make a positive change. It is a challenge to amplify their digital presence positively. Without support and acknowledgment, many students feel overlooked and ignored in their efforts to use technology to impact change. Moreover, the absence of a monitored environment for engaging in meaningful civic discourse poses a massive challenge for students and educators. Creating a safe space requires careful consideration around safety, equity, and bias to ensure that students are supported but regulated to be inclusive and safe. The challenge lies in establishing a cohesive solution that not only bridges their home and school usage of technology but provides a secure and empowering virtual environment for students to showcase their passions and their initiatives and to be able to engage in positive global conversations. Conversely, we also have a challenge in educators being able to facilitate these learning experiences due to their lack of understanding of digital safety, emerging technologies, and the impacts social media, technological ethics, and our online presence can have on our daily lives.

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