It seems like every other a day, another teacher is losing their job over something Facebook related. Unfortunately, though Facebook may be your own personal account, many school districts are using the information they find on these sites to get rid of teachers.
If you’re a teacher, you need to protect yourself from being a Facebook victim. Use the following advice in order to keep your Facebook page from becoming the reason you lose your job.
1. Set the correct privacy settings.
If you want your Facebook page to be your own personal account, then you cannot open it to the public, especially students or their families. Make sure that you set your privacy settings so that only your friends can see your photos and posts. Facebook automatically defaults to a public setting, so if you don’t manually change this, your entire profile will be viewable by anyone who even Google’s your name. You also need to make sure that you set your settings for friends only and not friends of friends, as you don’t know if a student’s parents could be friends with one of your friends, which could allow them to see your information.
2. Don’t become friends with your students or their parents.
After you have set your privacy settings, you need to only be friends with people who have nothing to do with your job. This means that you should never friend a student or a member of their family, and if you really want to keep your Facebook life separate from work, you may even want to consider not friending any of your co workers either.
3. Keep a professional profile picture.
Even after you’ve set up your privacy settings and ensured that you’re not friends with anyone related to school, you still need to take precautions, as you never know who could be friends with someone from school. One important thing to do is to make sure your profile picture is always professional. Posting the picture of you in your bikini or chugging a beer bong will not make you look like a professional, and if these pictures get into the wrong hands, you could end up with a severe problem. Watch the type of image you have as your profile picture, and you may even want to make sure that you are careful of the images you post to Facebook.
4. Watch what you say.
Students and parents don’t believe that teachers have a life outside of the classroom or that it could contain any type of fun. Posting status updates about getting drunk or partaking in illegal activities can be seen as a big no-no by your school district. Also, any type of racist or hateful comment is also not a good idea. If you want to post a status update on Facebook, always think carefully about it first before posting.
5. Don’t have a Facebook account.
The only way to truly keep yourself safe online is to not have an account. Even though it’s not fair, too many students, parents and school districts are using the information they find on these sites to ruin a teacher’s career. Even though you may like the social network, you really need to ask yourself if it’s worth having due to the possibility of losing your job. If you don’t want to delete your account, you may just want to stay as inactive on the site as possible. If you don’t post anything, nobody can use it against you.
This and many other educational articles helping web professionals understand the challenges of the web have been prepared for you by Lauren Williams thanks to SEOMap the keyword strategy experts.
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