Parents everywhere should be taking a look at their schools' Codes of Conduct, particularly where "technology" is concerned.
Ours are here.
Our Code specifies that "Electronic Media Crime" will be reported to the police.
As far as I can tell, searching the Code, "Electronic Media Crime" is the only form of misbehavior that automatically triggers a call to the police. Even bringing a gun to school, which carries the same penalty -- a one-year suspension -- doesn't seem to require police involvement.
The Code doesn't say what an "Electronic Media Crime" is, and I'm skeptical anyone explains it to the kids.
The district does require students and staff to sign an agreement called "Acceptable Use Form for Computers," but the form doesn't mention that police will be called if a child logs onto the system and does something he shouldn't. (So far it's always been boys.)
At this point, it's looking to me as if computers in schools are a real and present danger to adolescent boys.
Computers are dangerous because public schools don't seem to have real IT people, so the systems are wide open. At least, our system is open. I'm told, by more than one student, that the password for the WiFi system is the same as the password for the teacher section of the network. Lots of students have the password, and some of the teachers rely on kids as young as age 13 to help them with their computers.
I was talking to my California sister about this, and she pointed out that "Technology Directors" in schools aren't trained in IT. They're just teachers with an interest in computers. They don't know any more about network security than I do. (Is that true elsewhere?)
So we send kids to school in buildings where the network has limited security at best, and in a country where "unauthorized access" to a computer is a federal offense.
While you're checking your district's Code of Conduct, you should take a look at the regulations governing questioning of students. Here in New York, schools don't have to notify parents that they are questioning their child, no matter how serious the infraction.
So far I don't see a limit to the length of time school personnel can question students without parents present, either.
Does anyone know whether there are federal regulations requiring schools to secure their networks?
Or whether the doctrine of "negligent supervision" applies?
Florida Teen Charged With Computer Hacking After Changing Teacher's Computer Background To Gay Kiss Image