Social media policies are still relatively new. Some districts haven’t figured out how to enact policies that protect students while still allowing employees their right to use the communication tools. One major problem with social media policies is that the technology changes too fast for the policies to keep up. Teach your children basic common sense and internet safety. Your children should understand your policies for social media.
Tech-savvy teachers have set up accounts on social media platforms to broadcast announcements. For example, some teachers set up a class account on Twitter and tweet out updates, additional resources and class announcements. Likewise, Facebook pages -- not personal profiles -- are being used in schools as a group-wide communication tool. Some class teachers use a blog or forum to disseminate information or to host discussions outside of class time.
Your kids need to understand the distinction between using social media for personal reasons and for academic reasons. If social media in school is limited to academic use, problems will be eliminated. For example, if your student participates in a group Facebook page for a school course, he or she should understand that doesn’t include "friending" the teacher. Keep social media use in school academic, and save the personal use for home.
The reality is that social media is here to stay. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or one of the innumerable other platforms, students need to understand how social media works and how to use it appropriately. Eventually, this technical literacy will help your kids be competitive in the workplace. Learning how to communicate in a group and how to navigate social channels will help them be tech-savvy learners.
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