322P - Copyright Infringement and Plagiarism

  • It is the intent of the Frederick County School Board that the Frederick County Public Schools comply with the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S. Code, Sect. 101, et seq.) This policy represents a sincere effort to observe the copyright law.

    Employees and students are prohibited from exchanging, using, or copying copyrighted works unless the action is authorized by:

    1. specific exemptions in the copyright law;

    2. the principle of fair use;

    3. the fair-use guidelines; or

    4. licenses or written permission from the copyright owner.

    Any other copying must be approved by the school division's Copyright Specialist on a case-by-case basis.

    Employees and students are prohibited from "performing" copyrighted works unless the performance is authorized by:

    1. Title 17, U.S. Code, Sect. 110(1), (4), or (8);

    2. performance licenses;

    3. purchase order authorization; or

    4. written permission from the copyright owner or the owner's agent.

    The superintendent shall appoint a Copyright Specialist who shall:

    1. implement this copyright policy;

    2. prepare and distribute A Copyright Quick Guide;

    3. conduct training programs to assure that employees and students are aware of the copyright law;

    4. answer questions about the copyright law;

    5. provide forms for maintaining appropriate records of permissions, agreements, and licenses;

    6. place appropriate copyright warning notices on or near copying equipment; and

    7. other related duties, as needed.

    Employees who willfully disregard the Board Copyright Policy, or the specific provisions of A Copyright Quick Guide do so at their own risk and assume all liability, including the possibility of dismissal for persistent copyright infringements.

    If the Copyright Specialist or any immediate employee supervisor is aware of copyright infringements by an employee, he/she shall counsel the infringer and document the infraction. If the employee continues to infringe the Board Copyright Policy, the Copyright Specialist or the supervisor shall inform the superintendent of the continuing infringements. The superintendent shall take appropriate steps to stop the illegal actions. If the infringer refuses to stop the infringements, the superintendent may take appropriate steps to terminate the employment of the persistent infringer.

    Students who cheat, participate in any form of plagiarism, assist or encourage others to do so, or who otherwise willfully disregard the Board Copyright Policy will be counseled, will lose credit for the assignment, and will be referred to the school administrator for disciplinary action. The school administrator will notify the parent/guardian of the action and reason for the action.


    Legal Reference(s):
    Title 17, U.S. Code, Section(s) 101, et seq.


    Adopted: December 6, 1994
    Amended: January 18, 2005