Cherry Creek schools ditches EBSCO student database after prolonged complaints about accessible porn

AURORA | The Cherry Creek School District is switching research databases after two years of allegations from some parents that the databases contained pornography.

Cherry Creek schools spokesperson Abbe Smith said students will no longer have access to research databases provided by EBSCO, which contain thousands of scholarly and popular magazine articles for research projects. Sources for include articles from Cosmopolitan and Men’s Health magazines.

Students will have access to another research database service, Gale, which has what Smith said are tighter filter controls.

EBSCO officials deny that any information available to students via their databases is pornographic.

For two years, parents Drew and Robin Paterson appeared at school board meetings and told administrators they found “inappropriate “materials and “true pornography” with simple database searches through their child’s EBSCO account, which was provided by the school district.

EBSCO databases contain links that transport readers onto public Internet pages, where school district filters catch inappropriate materials, said Smith, but only if the reader is searching from a school district computer where the filters are applied.

Smith said Cherry Creek worked with EBSCO, a major, international supplier of educational databases to schools, for about one year to prevent “objectionable” content from being accessed through the database and tighten search filters, but the district was “not satisfied” with the result.

 

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