District Attorney Shugrue’s Community Engagement team is in the process of developing evidence-based, proactive programs. These programs will extend to schools (elementary through high school), veterans groups, senior citizens and other special interests groups. As the programs begin they will be highlighted on this website.
Implementing school-based programs are a priority. Cyber safety, healthy living, anti-bullying and general good citizenship programs will be available. \
Current School Programs Include:
In-School Youth Internet Safety Programs: These internet safety programs last for 7 weeks, one 45-minute session per week. They are available for students grade 2 through grade 8. While each grade’s curriculum differs, the overarching goal of the program is to empower youth to make safe and positive choices online (including live gaming, messaging, apps and social media). The curriculum for grades 6 through 8 includes an element educating students about sextortion. This will be presented in an age-appropriate manor. We will provide caregivers with a letter ensuring they are aware of what their child will be learning during the program.
In developing this program, we have coordinated with the FBI, the US Attorney’s Office, the Massachusetts State Police and the Massachusetts Children’s Alliance.
Caregiver Internet Safety Program: Our juvenile prosecutor and youth program specialist offer a 45-minute presentation for caregivers. The presentation educates caregivers on current apps/live gaming/social media that present concerns; identifies red flag behaviors that indicate a child is at-risk online; shares case studies that give real-life examples of how quickly children can become victims of online predators; and provides strategies to proactively monitor their child’s online behaviors to ensure safe and positive online interactions while also includes resources that assist if a child has already taken part in risky online behavior.
Legalities and Approaches to Safe EdTech Usage: This hour-long presentation is for teachers and administrators. It introduces laws surrounding EdTech usage in the classroom and discusses how these legalities should inform practice. Educators are then provided concrete tools to ensure their use of EdTech in the classroom is safe and that students’ online identities are protected. This presentation ideally fits into an afternoon staff meeting time frame. Thus far, this presentation has received 100% positive feedback from educators for being helpful, educational and applicable. Under the Children’s Internet Privacy Act, a federal law, educators are required to be trained on safe internet usage. This program is a great way to provide said training.
For information on community programs call the District Attorney’s Office to speak to the Director of Community Engagement. (413-443-5951)
Partner agencies provide programs on various topics. See the helpful resources tab on the right to access programing in the community.