Facebook Friends NOT For Everyone
Educators have been slow to embrace social media, but knowing as well do that their main audience is using the new technology to communicate, share and learn, they have started to get on board.
Not so fast, say some school districts. Teachers are being told not to Friend their students on Facebook for fear of even a hint of impropriety.
Is This Learning?
The question is, does this help or hurt the educational process? Who benefits and who is really protected? Would students learn better if they could communicate with their teachers easier? Would there be more cases of unlawful contact between teachers and students just because they were connected on PUBLIC social media accounts?
Much Ado Over What?
The answers will not come easily, and only when all fear of social media has abated. For now the best course of action for educators seems to be to err on the side of caution.
No friending teachers – Come August 28, teachers and students in Missouri can no longer be friends — on Facebook. With a new law, Missouri has became the first in the nation to prohibit social networking between students and teachers. When Missouri Senate Bill 54, which was signed by the governor last week, takes effect later this month, teachers and students will no longer be able to connect on any site (not just Facebook) that allows for private communication. The bill, also called the “Amy Hestir Student Protection Act,” is designed to protect students from sexual misconduct by teachers. It is named for a Missouri woman who was continually molested and assaulted by her junior high school teacher. According to authorities, the teacher was employed by several school districts and was even recognized as a “Teacher of the Year.”
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