Monday, January 11, 2010

Does Your School Tweet? They Should!!

So last night I had a parent and member of the community request that I create a Twitter Account and Facebook account for our district.  Well, I am not far enough up the food chain to do anything with the district, but I did ask and get granted permission to create a Twitter account for my school.  I am not quite ready to tackle a Facebook Account yet...Just starting with Twitter.

After creating an account and emailing all the teachers telling them about it, I received an email that the district was worried about students Tweets with profanity being Tweeted to our Twitter account.  I have our account set to private so that I have to approve all the followers.  I also don't plan on following anyone that way their tweets do not show up on our Twitter Account.  Then we ran into the problem of reply Tweets (@).  Well I realized that I could easily block the user if they left a vulgar or profane Tweet mentioning the school account.  By Blocking them I delete the Tweet from our Twitter Account.  That means constantly monitoring the account, but it is Twitter...isn't that the point?

Now that I have got that out of the way, why should schools use Twitter?  It is a great source for communicating with parents, students, and the community.  What could you communicate you might ask?
  1. Daily and Weekly Announcements, Office Information, Guidance Information.
  2. Cancellations and Delays
  3. Student of the Week or Day
  4. Athlete of the Week or Day
  5. Stories about students and teachers from your school
  6. Awards, Scholarships, Grants, and Accomplishments by teachers and students at your school
  7. Sports scores and statisitics
  8. Scheduled events (Sports, Band, Drama, Meetings, Registration, etc.)
  9. Club and Organization information.  Sponsors could share field trip related information, meeting dates, Volunteer opportunities.  Imagine what this could do for FFA, FBLA, DECA, BETA, etc, etc, etc
  10. Daily Lunch Menu
  11. Dates and information for extra-curricular activities
  12. Links to teacher webpages and student work created and posted online
  13. Due Dates and Test dates both school wide and within teachers classrooms
How does your school use Twitter?

Be sure that your school has a policty regarding Social Networking before creating a Twitter Account.

3 comments:

  1. My school uses twitter, as do most several other schools in my district. Our twitter name is @wbtigers. You can also check the other schools that I follow on that account (I follow those schools so I can get ideas from what they tweet about). Since my schools is a low SES elementary, I really don't have a lot of followers or issues with abuse.

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  2. My schoolsystem uses twitter (@wsfcs) to let parents and the community know about upcoming events, when report cards are sent home, weather delays, when schools are features on local TV stations, and other events. There is one high school marketing class in my district that also uses twitter. The Department of Instructional Technology for our district also uses twitter to highlight certain information and workshops (@WSFCSDIT).

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  3. We started using Twitter and Facebook this year with teachers (I, too was nominated to take on this job). The increased engagement by parents has been amazing. Facebook has been our biggest increase in communication (most have a FB account but not Twitter). We use the FB account for everything from announcements to bits and pieces of what their kids learned throughout the day. It has been a great experience for us.

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