This morning I read an article titled New research just released on “School Principals and Social Networking in Education: Practices, Policies, and Realities in 2010”. The article is about research results regarding what principals thought about social networking in their school communities. To gather information researchers used a survey of school principals and an online discussion group of principals who were already using social networking. The results were surprising to me, most principals found value in using social networking in education listing the following as specific examples of benefits.
What is the value of social networking in education?
- Improve school wide communications
- A channel to communicate to an extended network of educators
- Students view learning as more collaborative
- Students see it as a connection to real-life learning
- Improves students motivation, engagement, and /or active involvement
With all of these benefits, what’s the hold up?
Schools are noted as some of the last hold outs to implement the use of social networking. Among the discussion group none of the principals had school or district policies in place for social networking that were sufficient. There are also concerns about safety, privacy, confidentiality, and a lack of information about how to make sure these sites are used appropriately at school.
I know this topic is controversial and people have their opinions on this subject, so let’s hear them. Let us know what you think about social networing in schools!