Internet Related/Filtering/Firewall Thread, Pupil access to Wikipedia in Technical; It was implied by a senior member of staff today that our pupils should not have access to Wikipedia. (They ...
1st February 2012, 09:53 PM #1
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Pupil access to Wikipedia
It was implied by a senior member of staff today that our pupils should not have access to Wikipedia. (They don't at the moment.) I didn't recover my composure in time to ask why. Does anybody know of any reasons why pupils should not be able to use Wikipedia? I'm in a primary school.
1st February 2012, 10:00 PM #2
Can't think of a reason really. Much like you wouldn't block them from reading Encyclopaedia Britannica. With a few provisos of course - 1. block editing and 2. make sure your filter is smart enough to block the sexual stuff anyway, based on page content.
2 Thanks to localzuk:
tom_newton (1st February 2012), will_ (1st February 2012)
1st February 2012, 10:11 PM #3
Blocking edits is a great idea - stops accidents/stupidity getting you an edit ban for a start
1st February 2012, 10:12 PM #4
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It's not really the edits that concern me (yet) - read access would be a good start!
1st February 2012, 10:16 PM #5
I doubt many primary age kids edit wikipedia.
TBH, I have few problems with Wikipedia... other than one of educating both pupils and staff that the information MUST be double checked like all information picked up from the internet and from books too I suppose (you should never rely on one source).
Wikipedia tell you to double check against a reliable source such as a newspaper...
.... I use this story to illustrate the problem Daily Mirror trapped in Wikicirclejerk ? The Register
Last edited by elsiegee40; 1st February 2012 at 10:28 PM.
Reason: added the bit in italics
1st February 2012, 10:23 PM #6
True, things like that happen, but then as has been shown by Nature's study, Wikipedia is as accurate as the EB I mentioned. Checking sources is a key skill that needs to be taught to all - as it stands, many schools just go by what text books say, and I remember finding numerous errors in my books at school.
Originally Posted by elsiegee40
1st February 2012, 10:26 PM #7
TBH as good as Wikipedia is it shouldn't be trusted as gospel as it can so easily be edited.
2nd February 2012, 10:20 AM #8
It's a damn sight better than Yahoo! Answers though. I die a little inside every time I'm asked to unblock a page there.
As far as Wikipedia goes, it's great for getting a high-level abstract of any idea/topic, and providing links to further material. It's not a destination for knowledge, more like a guide book.
Edits should definitely be blocked for timewasting, though. I've done it with a regex in Smoothwall, if anyone wants.
2nd February 2012, 10:36 AM #9
oooh... I like Yahoo Answers.
I enjoy answering the "How can I get to facebook in school" questions by pointing out that a public forum is a brilliant place to ask this, it shows great imagination and intelligence, and that as a school network manager I'll be blocking anything new I see as will all my colleagues in other schools and colleges who are also reading Yahoo Answers.
If I can be bothered, I then explain how most schools have tracking as well as filtering so they can see who has used which proxy.
I then finish with "Can you be sure I'm not your school's network manager?"
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