Facebook Off Limits in Wisconsin District
- By Dian Schaffhauser
A school district in Wisconsin has declared staff participation in social networking sites and instant messaging "irresponsible" to discourage their use. The decision was handed down by the board of education at Elmbrook Schools in the form of revised language for its district policy regarding staff use of IT and communication resources.
The technology steering committee for the district will use the new policy to educate teachers about the risks in using Facebook, specifically. Among the concerns: the potential for disclosure of too much personal information, as well as the inability to control who can view postings, since "friends" of friends can read Facebook pages; and teacher exposure to student posts that may reference the use of drugs or participation in illegal events, which the teacher must then report.
According to coverage in the School Library Journal, the district plans to provide similar Web 2.0 tools built around iGoogle in a controlled environment in coming years.
Dian Schaffhauser is a writer who covers technology and business for a number of publications. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.