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teachers, social media and lack of government guidance

24 January 2012

Teachers, pupils and social media - it was only a matter of time before this became a serious issue. 43 cases before the GTCE last year may not sound high, but how many more inappropriate relationships are being formed across schools, academies and the FE sector? Which begs the questions, why have we not seen Department for Education guidance specifically aimed at helping manage staff expectations and promote a consistent, measured approach nationally?

There is evidence of big differences in approach to the use of social media amongst schools- some ban teachers using the sites altogether, some allow restricted usage and others have barely considered the issue. And it needs to be looked at not only from a ‘friending’ point of view, but also to consider issues like appropriate privacy settings and profile pictures which, regardless of friending, can be accessed by pupils, parents and colleagues alike.

I hate to press for even more guidance in our sector, but this is an area where it seems schools need help.

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