Our My Two Cents question for this month is: Does your school or district have a policy about staff use of social networking (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.)? If so, what restrictions are in place? Read what some of your colleagues had to say:

Our system does not have an official policy about staff use of social networks. Our system does block Facebook, Twitter, etc., for use on school computers. My unofficial statements to faculty have always been to use good professional judgment when using the sites. It would not be good professional judgment to “friend” a student. Additionally, professional confidential information should never be shared on these sites.
Cathy Vasile, Principal, Blossomwood Elementary School, Huntsville, Alabama

We are looking at adding a board policy addressing these issues in the near future. We are now working with staff and making them aware of potential problems that can arise from the use of these social networks. We see the good and bad possibilities of these networks.
Gary Meldrem, Assistant Principal, Grinnell Middle School, Grinnell, Iowa

Share your school’s policies with us.

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Teach, Don't Block

Many educators and building or district leaders first reaction to social networking is to block it. Usually this is a gut reaction to bad press or comments about what can go wrong. I'll bet that if the individuals who are concerned had a class in the benefits and possibilities of social networking in the classroom and with staff that they would change their minds. These tools are great for helping to develop a personal learning network. Want adults to be life long learners and have differentiated staff development right at their fingertips? Teach them how to set up a PLN with social networking tools. I urge you to not block out the future!

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