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Social Media Policies for K-12 Education Susie Smith Twotrees Technologies.

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Presentation on theme: "Social Media Policies for K-12 Education Susie Smith Twotrees Technologies."— Presentation transcript:

1 Social Media Policies for K-12 Education Susie Smith Twotrees Technologies

2 Why is its use so challenging for Schools? What is Social Media?

3  Social networking sites are increasingly used to keep up with close social ties  The average user of a social networking site has more close ties and is half as likely to be socially isolated as the average American  Facebook users are more trusting than others  Facebook users have more close relationships  Internet users get more support from their social ties and Facebook users get the most support  Facebook users are much more politically engaged than most people  Facebook revives “dormant” relationships  MySpace users are more likely to be open to opposing points of view Social Networking Studies

4 Uses of Social Media  Communicate with community  Educate in the classroom curriculum

5 Social Media Polices for Three Audiences  Public/Parents-how the district wishes to use social media to communicate  Staff-how the district wishes to use social media to communicate and educate  Students-how the district wishes to use social media to educate

6 Using Facebook/Twitter for district communication with Parents The percent of adult internet users in each age group who use social networking sites, 2005-2012

7 Using Facebook/Twitter for district communication with Parents As of August 2012: 12% of online adults say they use Pinterest 12% of online adults say they use Instagram 5% of online adults say they use Tumblr 66% of online adults use Facebook 20% use LinkedIn 16% use Twitter

8 Suggested Policy The websites that the district builds provides the School Board a medium to publicize its official position on issues related to the schools such as school building projects, proposed school budgets and public policies affecting the schools. The web site is an outlet for the official message of the school and is not a forum for dissemination of other views. The content of the web site shall remain in the exclusive control of the school, its school board an designated agents

9 Practice Create a Facebook FAN site for the district/ Link to districts official website Allow only Fans/no comments Keep Updated and Fresh! Also create a Twitter feed-again keep updated and fresh Be thoughtful of posting proprietary, copyrighted, defamatory, libelous or obscene Never post information about students – all student information is considered private and confidential

10 Always contact Twitter, Facebook and YouTube to report fake accounts, spam, and inappropriate comments. Write disclaimers and guidelines for use and post them on your Twitter, Facebook and YouTube pages. Link to your disclaimers and guidelines from your website home page. Conduct a public presentation about how your district is using social media. Preferably, conduct the presentation at a public event, like a school board meeting, and televise it district-wide. Turn off comments on both your YouTube channel and on each video you post on the channel. (Rogers AR Twitter) Practice

11 Concerns Affecting Staff Social Media Use Security Misuse of District technology IT Drain Productivity

12 Security


14 Inappropriate Communication With Students The following conversation took place on a teacher’s “wall” on Facebook: Teacher: “[student] and [another student] sittin in a tree. K I S S I N G. 1st comes love then comes marriage. HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOL” Student: “don’t be jealous cause you cant get any lol:)” Teacher: “What makes you think I want any? I'm not jealous. I just like to have fun and goof on you guys. If you don't like it. Kiss my brass! LMAO” A high school English teacher was suspended for blogging about comments she wanted to make on student report cards. Some comments included “Nowhere near as good as her sibling. Are you sure they’re related?” and “Weirdest kid I’ve ever met.” Unfortunately for her, students and parents shared her blog on Facebook and Twitter, causing a stir that led to her suspension.

15 Modes of Speech There are four ways in which a school employee speaks. [1] The first is where a public employee speaks off the job as a private citizen on government policies that are of interest to the public at large, such as when a teacher writes a letter to the editor expressing a political point as in Pickering v. Board of Education. [2] The second is where the public employee engages in speech while at work but not as part of his employment, such as a district attorney passing out a questionnaire about job conditions at work as in Connick v. Myers.

16 Modes of Speech [3] The third is where the public employee engages in speech off the job as a private citizen that is not related to government policies as in Roe v. City of San Diego. [4] The fourth and final way is where a public employee speaks on the job as part of his or her official duties on government policies that are of interest to the public at large as in Ceballos v. Garcetti. Pickering Balancia

17 Case Study: Richerson v. Beckon (9th Cir. 2009) Part time curriculum specialist and part time instructional coach for teachers posted blog entries on publicly available blog - Criticized co-worker and referred to co-worker as “white boy” - Said she wanted to draw “a little Hitler mustache” on the union representative’s face –Employee’s blog entries were not protected speech - Personal attacks – not matters of public concern - Undermined the employee’s ability to complete her job - Speech would likely "disrupt co-worker relations, erode a close working relationship premised on personal loyalty and confidentiality, and interfere with her performance of her duties"

18 Teacher Boundary Issues On January 22, 2010, MSNBC reported that a Brownsville, Pennsylvania high school teacher was suspended for 30 days without pay for pictures of the teacher with a stripper posted on Facebook –The pictures were taken while the teacher attended a bridal shower for a friend –The pictures included the teacher, fully clothed, in the same frame as the stripper; the teacher was not posing or acting inappropriately –The pictures were posted by a third party—not by the teacher The ACLU has gone on record as supporting the teacher, although no lawsuit has been filed

19 Use District Resources


21 Shelterbelt Internet Management System II

22 Twelve Strategies Review district guidelines. Create an official site for your school or district and building. Keep your personal business private. Recognize that as public employees, you always represent your school or district. Avoid participating in the cutesy, sometimes raunchy online surveys and other gimmicks that social media sites use to generate traffic.

23 12 Strategies Don’t connect personally with students. Recognize that the parents of your students are your partners in the educational process, not your “friends.” Use group sites or pages to connect with students and parents for educational purposes, such as homework help or assignments. Group pages should not give access to teachers’ personal and private information and accounts. Don’t post student photos on group pages without parental permission, and don’t post student photos on personal pages.

24 12 Strategies Digital content lives in perpetuity online. You will be held accountable for what you post. Avoid anonymous or misleading postings and comments. Learn how to use social media and networking sites wisely and well.

25 TAP  Transparent—maintain openness, visibility and accountability  Accessible—consider all electronic communication to be a matter of record  Professional—use correct grammar and tone, choose appropriate subject matter and choose words that are courteous

26 Example Policies Page htt default.php?sectiondetailid=7074 school

27 Q&A Susie Smith 800-364-5700


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