Memphis, Tenn. and Palo Alto, Calif. – June 10, 2010 – Today, National PTA and Facebook announced a formal collaboration to promote responsible and safe Internet use to kids, parents and teachers. Together, National PTA and Facebook will establish a comprehensive program that will provide information, support and news to encourage citizenship online, reduce cyberbullying and advance Internet safety and security.
The partnership is founded on the belief that awareness is essential to supporting safe and responsible Internet use. Thus, in addition to creating comprehensive and engaging resources, PTA and Facebook are committing to aggressively promoting Internet safety information to their respective audiences. National PTA will use its Website (www.pta.org), and actively reach out to the 24,000 local PTAs across the country with a goal of reaching every American public school. Facebook will raise awareness of the resources among the hundreds of millions of parents, teachers and children using its service through an in-kind Facebook commitment equivalent to $1 million and promotion on other parts of the site, including the safety center.
The announcement kicks off the National PTA convention in Memphis, Tenn. which marks the 40-year anniversary of the union of two parent associations dedicated to children and when the National PTA became a desegregated association. At the convention, PTA is reaffirming its commitment to closing the achievement gap between students of different ethnicities and economic backgrounds. Recognizing that disparities exist not only in students’ access to technology but also in their access to related education materials, the partnership extends these efforts. As part of the agreement, both PTA and Facebook are committed to working to shrink the digital divide, by reaching families, regardless of income or race and providing them with tools and resources to keep them digitally smart on-line.
"Our vision is that each child, parent and teacher will have the knowledge and tools they need to harness the power of the Internet effectively – and safely," says Charles J. “Chuck” Saylors, National PTA President. "Today, as we kick off National PTA’s convention in Memphis, we are announcing a partnership that will provide parents all across the nation with the knowledge, tools and resources they need to keep their children safe in this ever-changing technological society.”
“Nothing is more important to us than the safety and well being of the people, especially the many teenagers, who use Facebook,” says Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer of Facebook. “Only through the constant and concerted effort of parents, teachers, law enforcement and industry can we keep kids safe and help them develop into tomorrow’s leaders. We are proud to be working with National PTA toward that goal."
The partnership builds on National PTA's 114-year history of advocacy on behalf of children and Facebook's efforts to create a trusted environment for its more than 400 million users. As was the case with the recently redesigned Facebook Safety Center, Facebook and PTA will consult with many child safety, education and technology experts to collect, build and maintain a comprehensive set of multi-media education resources for this initiative. The process will include significant input from Facebook's global Safety Advisory Board.
To stay up to date on the initiative visit the PTA’s Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/ParentTeacherAssociation and the Facebook in Education page at http://www.facebook.com/education.
Founded in February 2004, Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected. Anyone can sign up for Facebook and interact with the people they know in a trusted environment. Facebook is a privately held company and is headquartered in Palo Alto, Calif.
About National PTA
National PTA® comprises millions of families, students, teachers, administrators, and business and community leaders devoted to the educational success of children and the promotion of parent involvement in schools. PTA is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit association that prides itself on being a powerful voice for all children, a relevant resource for families and communities, and a strong advocate for public education. Membership in PTA is open to anyone who wants to be involved and make a difference for the education, health, and welfare of children and youth.