Everybody is using social media, including teachers. Facebook, twitter, and youtube are probably the most popular social sharing sites on the net. Should teachers be using them? Should schools have rules about how to use them? Is it appropriate for teachers to share classroom photos or incidents? Should teachers be punished for using these sites inappropriately?
Right now, there is a teacher in hot water for posting pictures of some of her students with duck tape over their mouths, with a caption about how to keep kids quiet.
Should that teacher be punished? For what? Using social media or duck taping students' mouths?
You must have a complete lapse of your brain if you use duck tape in that manner, and then post it.
The bottom line is this. Teachers are in the public eye and need to maintain a certain trust level with society. Teachers do have some sort of a moral clause in their contracts, even if this is not spelled out completely.
So why would a teacher jeopardize their career by doing anything inappropriate? Posting on facebook is actually a nonissue.
Facebook is just a way of getting caught.
Do not post anything personal about your classroom, students, or school. That could get you in trouble for violating students right to privacy.
Every teacher should be expected to know what is appropriate to post. Nobody should need to spell that out.
Teachers are under a microscope. Do not give anyone a reason to think you are behaving badly and give them reasons to discipline you.
Even blocking a facebook account to only certain people is not a good idea either, if you post inappropriate things. There is never any guarantee of your postings staying hidden. Why take that chance?
School districts should not need to have a policy. It's just common sense. Do you lack common sense as a teacher? I hope not.
Social media can be a great thing, but it can be a two edged sword. Teachers should especially use it wisely.