Wednesday, March 21, 2012

LAUSD Social Media Policy in Plain English

Los Angeles Unified School District just released a new socialmedia (SM) policy for its employees.  I’ve read a lot of these policies in recent months and have helped craft guidelines for staff at my own district.   The fact that LAUSD has published guidelines is not unique. However, the policy seems to have generated a lot of press and controversy though in my reading I saw nothing ground-breaking or contentious. 

In plain, simple English here’s LA’s guidelines for teachers:

Keep personal and work accounts separate

Engage in inappropriate conduct and ‘we’re gonna get ya’

Don’t post pictures of students without permission

Don’t share confidential information

Don’t threaten, harass, bully or be an ass online

Set your privacy settings to high but be careful in case they fail

 If you tell people you’re a teacher, act like one

Don’t lie about who you are

If the world is falling apart you can blog that you’re ok – as long as you take care of your students first

Probably the biggest eyebrow raiser is #5 which states in part, “… User should have no expectation of privacy regarding their use of District property…”  The Union apparently doesn’t like this one but similar language is contained in nearly every Acceptable Use policy – corporate and school – that I’ve read.  When you’re at work assume big brother is watching or if you screw up will follow your digital footprint and act accordingly. If you don’t like it buy a smart phone and access Facebook from there.  

All in all there’s nothing new here.  The list above could be entitled “Best Practices for Teachers in an Online World.” 

*image credit -

1 comment:

  1. The first one makes good sense to me. Having separate accounts certainly want protect you if you post something really deplorable, but having a separate account for my personal use with no ties to my employer or job tries to make it clear that I am not posting as an agent of my school district. Common sense and a bit of caution go a long way in protecting educators using social media. Thanks for sharing your post.



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