The idea of mixing Social Media within schools is often dismissed. But if used safely, carefully and sensibly, Social networks such as Facebook could become a schools most powerful tool for communication and feedback.
Having a clear divide between the social and professional use of Facebook is vital, and obviously the well being and protection of children is a main priority. But “being safe” should not result in missing an opportunity to use social media to engage the community, in and around your school. Facebook is a great way to share upcoming events, make urgent announcements, have discussions and debates and receive feedback about the school. And the great thing with social networks like this is the speed that news will travel. Some one will share your status; “School closed today due to snow” which will then be seen by their “Facebook friends” and within minutes the news is general knowledge- meaning no more jammed phone lines because parents are panicking.
Pages can also be created to share information about what is going on within the school- pictures of sports day or the end of year prom, while allowing students and teachers to share their thoughts with each other.
If Facebook wasn’t Facebook, and was re-branded completely different, many would see what a fantastic system of communication this provides. The hurdle we must over come is the preconceptions that surround Facebook, making so many uneasy about the idea.
And another thing, young people rely so much on Facebook in day to day life, maybe relating the boring information to something “trendy” would encourage students to listen up and take notice.