We have adopted the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) National Educational Technology Standards for Students (NETS*S). Listed below are the standards and benchmarks to be achieved by the end of 8th grade:

Standard 1: Demonstrate a sound understanding of basic operations and concepts of technology systems

1.1 Recognize hardware and software components used to provide access to network resources and know how common peripherals (e.g., scanners, digital cameras, video projectors) are accessed, controlled, connected, and used effectively and efficiently.

1.2 Know how to evaluate, select, and use appropriate technology tools and information resources to design, plan, develop, and communicate content information appropriately, addressing the target audience and providing accurate citations for sources.

1.3 Know how to identify appropriate file formats for a variety of applications and apply utility programs to convert formats, as necessary, for effective use in Web, video, audio, graphic, presentation, word processing, database, publication, and spreadsheet applications.

1.4 Continue touch typing techniques, increasing keyboarding facility and improving accuracy, speed, and general efficiency in computer operation.

1.5 Examine changes in hardware and software systems over time and identify how changes affect businesses, industry, government, education, and individual users.

1.6 Identify strategies and procedures for efficient and effective management and maintenance of computer files in a variety of different media and formats on a hard drive and network.

1.7 Know how to solve basic hardware, software, and network problems that occur during everyday use; protect computers, networks, and information from viruses, vandalism, and unauthorized use; and access online help and user documentation to solve common hardware, software, and network problems.

Standard 2: Understand the social, ethical, and human issues related to technology

2.1 Identify legal and ethical issues related to use of information and communication technology, recognize consequences of its misuse, and predict possible long-range effects of ethical and unethical use of technology on culture and society.

2.2 Discuss issues related to acceptable and responsible use of information and communication technology (e.g., privacy, security, copyright, file-sharing, plagiarism), analyze the consequences and costs of unethical use of information and computer technology (e.g., hacking, spamming, consumer fraud, virus setting, intrusion), and identify methods for addressing these risks.

2.3 Examine issues related to computer etiquette and discuss means for encouraging more effective use of technology to support effective communication, collaboration, personal productivity, lifelong learning, and assistance for individuals with disabilities.

Standard 3: Demonstrate use of technology tools to enhance learning, increase productivity, and promote creativity

3.1 Describe and apply common software features (e.g., spelling and grammar checkers, dictionary, thesaurus, editing options) to maximize accuracy in development of word processing documents; sorting, formulas and chart generation in spreadsheets; and insertion of pictures, movies, sound, and charts in presentation software to enhance communication to an audience, promote productivity, and support creativity.

3.2 Describe how to use online environments or other collaborative tools to facilitate design and development of materials, models, publications, and presentations; and to apply utilities for editing pictures, images, and charts.

Standard 4: Demonstrate competence in the use of technology communications tools

4.1 Know how to use telecommunications tools such as e-mail, discussion groups, and online collaborative environments to exchange data collected and learn curricular concepts by communicating with peers, experts, and other audiences.

4.2 Know how to use a variety of media and formats to design, develop, publish, and present products (e.g., presentations, newsletters, Web pages) that effectively communicate information and ideas about the curriculum to multiple audiences.

Standard 5: Demonstrate competence in the use of technology research tools

5.1 Know how to conduct an advanced search using Boolean logic and other sophisticated search functions; and know how to evaluate information from a variety of sources for accuracy, bias, appropriateness, and comprehensiveness.

5.2 Know how to identify and implement procedures for designing, creating, and populating a database; and in performing queries to process data and report results relevant to an assigned hypothesis or research question.

5.3 Know how to select and use information and communication technology tools and resources to collect and analyze information and report results on an assigned hypothesis or research question.

Standard 6: Demonstrate competence in the use of technology in problem-solving and decision-making

6.1 Identify two or more types of information and communication technology tools or resources that can be used for informing and solving a specific problem and presenting results, or for identifying and presenting an informed rationale for a decision.

6.2 Students describe the information and communication technology tools they might use to compare information from different sources, analyze findings, determine the need for additional information, and draw conclusions for addressing real-world problems