MANALAPAN, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – It’s an issue many parents grapple with – how old is old enough for your child to be on social media?

One school district in New Jersey is now asking parents to sign a pledge to keep their kids off it until they turn 13.

“It’s a fine balancing act as to do you let your kid or do you not let your child,” parent Dana Rojas told CBS2’s Andrea Grymes.

The Manalapan-Englishtown Regional School District in New Jersey is trying to make it easier for parents.

They’re asking parents of third-graders to sign the “Take it slow, let them grow” pledge – vowing to keep their son or daughter “free from social media” until they’re at least 13 years old.

(Credit: TV 10/55)

“They’re clearly not ready emotionally, developmentally to deal with the type of interactions they’re going to run into,” Superintendent John Marciante said.

Dr. Marciante says they’re introducing the pledge at back-to-school nights for the first time this year; targeting children before they get interested in social media.

The superintendent tells CBS2 this stems from an incident back in March when Clark Mills Elementary was put on lockdown because students were threatened in an app chat room.

Marciante said that was the last straw.

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The superintendent points to predatory behavior, possible exposure to pornography, and cyber bullying as reasons they’re trying to cut out social media for young kids.

“Some people can be rude to you and like disrespect you,” fourth-grader Angelica Pagan said.

“A lot of parents will probably sign off on it and not keep their promise but it’s a good idea,” Pagan’s father, Juan added.

The superintendent hopes to get 100 percent of parents on board at all five of their elementary schools. Marciante says it will also make it easier for parents to say no to their child.


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