Social  Media  Policies For  School  Employees
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Social Media Policies For School Employees



Presentation from the California League of Middle/High School Conference

Presentation from the California League of Middle/High School Conference



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  • We already protect students and staff from inappropriate content. Email and internet filters are in place. Information systems are password protected only authorized persons have access. Internet traffic is monitored.
  • In California individuals have the right to conduct personal activities without observation, intrusion or interference. So if social networking activities do not interfere with the employer’s legitimate business interests they are protected. At this time however this is untested in the California Courts.
  • Plaintiff sued chair manufacturer claiming she was injured. FB pictures showed otherwise. Bishop suspended by Church of England for comments on Royal Wedding on FB.
  • Some recommend that companies adopt a policy prohibiting supervisors from “friending” subordinates.
  • A teacher in N.C. posted that she was teaching at “the most ghetto school” and listed one of her hobbies as drinking.

Social  Media  Policies For  School  Employees Social Media Policies For School Employees Presentation Transcript

  • Social Media Policies for School Employees
    Presented by
    Vanessa Landesfeind, Ed.D.
    Stephen R. D. Glass, Ho.T.
  • Social Media Use Statistics
    Each month more than 3 billion photos and 180 billion posts are uploaded to Facebook.
    The average Facebook user has 130 friends.More than 150 million people engage with Facebook on external websites every month.
    People that access Facebook via mobile are twice as active than non-mobile users (think about that when designing your Facebook page).
    People spend over 500 billion minutes per month on Facebook.
  • Social Media Use Statistics
    Twitter gets more than 300,000 new users every day.
    There are currently 110 million users of Twitter’s services.
    Twitter started as a simple SMS-text service.
    Twitter has donated access to all of its tweets to the Library of Congress for research and preservation.
  • Social Media Use Statistics
    LinkedIn is the oldest of the four sites in this post, having been created on May 5 2003.
    There are more than 70 million users worldwide.80% of companies use LinkedIn as a recruitment tool.
    A new member joins LinkedIn every second.
    LinkedIn receives almost 12 million unique visitors per day.
    Executives from all Fortune 500 companies are on LinkedIn.
  • What is Social Media?
    For the purposes of this presentation we consider social media to be is any form of online publication or presence that allows end users to engage in multi-directional conversations in or around the content on the website. (
    Common examples are Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, blogs, wikis, YouTube, and photo sharing sites.
  • Scenarios for Discussion
    Or….the stories are true but the profiles have been changed to protect our “friends”.
    Consider how you would handle each of these incidents.
  • Issues Related to Social Media
    Traditional boundaries between staff and students can be blurred.
    Employee rights to privacy needs to be clearly defined
    Employee issues such as harassment have a new forum
    Employees as representatives of the school brand
    Security of information
  • Disclaimer
    Social media is continuously evolving and case law regarding social media issues is being created right now.
    All information in this presentation is intended as a starting point for further conversation and a sampling of what is happening in private industry and higher education.
  • Social Media Issues We Already Consider in K- 12 Schools
  • Workplace Internet Use
    Employers have legitimate reasons to monitor internet use including:
    To minimize legal exposure
    To increase productivity
    To avoid information loss
  • Social Media Issues We Should Consider for Employees K – 12 Schools
  • Social Networking and Privacy Outside of Work in CA
    There are no laws prohibiting an employer from looking at unrestricted social network content posted by an employee.
    California’s constitution protects individuals privacy interests.
    California also has lifestyle protection statutes which protect employees’ off-the-job interests.
  • Social Networking and Privacy Outside of Work in Other States
    Recent court cases outside of California have established that posts to social networking sites are in part discoverable .
    Employers should be cautious in posting comments regarding human resource issues, no matter how seemingly private the network
  • Harassment in a New Setting
    Existing workplace sexual harassment policies apply to social networking, during and after work hours.
    Supervisors should be particularly cautious with respect to subordinates.
    “Friend” requests from a supervisor can be perceived as pressure.
    “Unfriending” can also be misinterpreted.
  • Protecting the School Image
    Many organizations including higher education institutions have begun leveraging social media to reach new and existing clients
    Unofficial posts by organization employees can be damaging
    Simply advising employees to “be professional” may not be enough
  • How to Write a Social Media Policy
    See Handout
  • Very Recent Developments
    The National Labor Relations Board has issued a complaint against a company in Connecticut. The issue in question is whether a policy preventing employees from making disparaging comments regarding the employer on social networking sites, violates the employees right to engage in union activities.
    The case will be heard before an NLRB Administrative Law Judge in January 2011.
  • About Us
    Vanessa Landesfeind
    Work Spouse: “They Call Him Mr. Glass”
    Hometown: The LBC
    Activities: Not friending on FB and Fonts
    Interests: Charter school development and TV
    Stephen Glass
    Work Spouse: Dr. L
    Hometown: The OC
    Activities: Friending everyone on FB
    Interests: Fantasy Football and Closing the
    Achievement Gap
  • Please Do Not “Friend” Us
    In your off time, you can become a “Fan” of Helvetica Think Tank on Facebook.
    All of the information you heard today will be posted.
  • References
    Genova, G.L. (2009). No place to play: Current employee privacy rights in social networking sites. Business Communications Quarterly,March, 97-100.
    Grensing-Pophal, L. (2010). The new social media guidelines. Information Today, 27(3), 45-47.
    Hunton & Williams. (2010). Court allows discovery of facebook and myspace content. Hunton Employment & Labor Law Perspectives.
    Kittay, D. (2010). Will you be my friend? New quandaries for a new age. Bar Leader, 34(5), 16-17.
  • Klein, J.S., Pappas, N.J., Pruzansky, J.E. (2010). When social-networking and the workplace collide. Human Resource Executive Online, June 16, 2010.
    Raudabaugh, J.N. (2010). Critical developments in labor and employment law. Inside the Beltway.