Back to School in a Digital World

10:00 am – 11:15 am EDT
Columbia Heights Educational Campus, Main Auditorium, 3101 16th Street NW, Washington, DC

A conversation about the opportunities and challenges of digital technology use by teens; Forum featured parents and members of the education community including FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski and experts from MTV, Common Sense Media, Family Online Safety Institute, Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies and the Columbia Heights Educational Campus.

On Thursday, September 8th, the Federal Communications Commission hosted Back to School in a Digital World, a forum bringing together parents, educators and experts to discuss the opportunities and challenges around technology use by adolescents. Recent surveys show that nearly three quarters of online teens use social network sites and, on average, teenagers send one text message every ten minutes during waking hours.

The event highlighted questions from parents, educators and others from across the country. The FCC has set up a crowdsourcing site to help collect some of the most common questions from parents on this important topic: Anyone could participate by submitting a question or voting for questions. In addition, the event featured multimedia video presentations and interactive segments with the live school audience. The forum was webcast live on Parents were able to send in questions during the forum at or tweet their questions to #fcclive.

The crowdsourcing site for the event reads: "We want to hear from you. As parents, tell us your burning questions - the ones you talk most about with your friends, family, teachers and others - surrounding issues related to your child's online and digital experiences, at home, at school, on mobile phones, tablets and other devices. We have assembled an impressive slate of experts who will answer your questions at a special event on September 8th in Washington, D.C. - "Back to School in a Digital World." You can watch online at - and we'll be posting answers and responses on our blog after the event, too. While this event will focus mainly on teenagers, we'll also be announcing other events focused more closely on the unique opportunities and challenges of other age groups. So feel free to give us your questions now, and one way or another, we'll respond!"

The panel discussion featured brief opening remarks by FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski.

Thursday, September 8, 2011
10:00AM - 11:15AM Eastern

Columbia Heights Educational Campus
Main Auditorium
3101 16th Street NW
Washington, D.C.

Julius Genachowski, Chairman, Federal Communications Commission
Jason Rzepka, Vice President of Public Policy, MTV
Alan Simpson, Vice President of Policy, Common Sense Media
Nicole Turner-Lee, VP & Director, Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies
Stephen Balkam, CEO, Family Online Safety Institute (FOSI)
René Cadogan, Bilingual Counselor, Columbia Heights Educational Campus

Back to School in a Digital World was free and open to the public. Due to limited seating, those attending were asked to pre-register by submitting their name, organizational affiliation and phone number to


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