SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Common Sense Media, the national nonprofit organization dedicated to helping kids and families thrive in a world of media and technology, last night announced plans to create a digital driver’s license for kids that will build on and expand the organization's groundbreaking K-12 digital literacy and citizenship curriculum into schools and homes across the country.
The announcement was made at the 7th Annual Common Sense Media Awards at Gotham Hall in New York, where former President Bill Clinton; Joel Klein, former chancellor of the New York City Department of Education; and Hon. Julius Genachowski, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, all shared their support for the digital driver’s license. President Clinton said he “love[s] the idea of a digital driver’s license,” while Joel Klein called the digital driver's license “such a great idea.”
The digital driver’s license is a self-guided, interactive, web-based game for kids with embedded assessment; it will teach kids the basics of online safety and security, privacy, cyberbullying and community, copyright and creation, and evaluation of websites.
“We’re very excited about this addition to our digital literacy and citizenship education efforts,” said James Steyer, CEO and founder, Common Sense Media. “Kids today are growing up in 24/7 media world with no road map to guide them. Young people need to learn to think critically and behave responsibly in this fast-paced digital world. It’s our hope that the digital driver’s license will allow us to reach every child in the country through schools, after-school programs, and at home to help them understand the rules of the road before they go online or go mobile.”
Common Sense Media’s digital literacy and citizenship curriculum - “Digital Literacy and Citizenship in a Connected Culture” – is a comprehensive K-12 curriculum designed to empower students to think critically and make informed choices about how they live and treat others in today’s digital media world. Since launching in August 2009, Common Sense’s education programs have been adopted by a network of more than 12,000 schools in all 50 states and 60 countries. This year, Common Sense has been working with leading departments of education and school districts - including the New York City Department of Education, Los Angeles Unified School District, Omaha Public Schools, and the Maine Department of Education - to reach 10,000 students to help us assess the curriculum and develop the foundation for the digital driver’s license.
The digital driver's license, now in development, is slated to launch in fall 2011 and become part of Common Sense Media’s existing curriculum for grades K-12, which is available at www.commonsense.org/educators. Common Sense Media will also offer a version of the digital driver’s license for kids to use at home and on other websites, through our existing and expanding set of distribution partners.
About Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media is dedicated to improving the lives of kids and families by providing the trustworthy information, education, and independent voice they need to thrive in a world of media and technology. We exist because our kids are growing up in a culture that profoundly impacts their physical, social, and emotional well-being. We provide families with the advice and media reviews they need in order to make the best choices for their children. Through our education programs and policy efforts, Common Sense Media empowers parents, educators, and young people to become knowledgeable and responsible digital citizens. For more information, go to: www.commonsense.org.