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Sorry moderator, I know you are trying to end this thread.

OK, you want to be responsible for monitoring all of your student's profiles
to make sure they are engaged in responsible behavior? How many hours in the
day do you have? What happens if you see - or should see - and fail to
effectively respond to something that presents a real concern? And if you
happen to be invited to a graduation party and find that some students are
drinking or smoking pot, you had better quickly call the police - because if
you do not and someone else does, then I can see the headline now: Teacher
busted at student graduation party.

Aren't you trying to take over what is a parent's job?

Teachers are not supposed to be friends of their students. They are supposed
to be mentors - an adult to youth relationship. But your mentoring duty ends
when these young people leave school.

If you are friends with some students and not others aren't you then in a
position where the credibility of your grading is now suspect?

We need to be using educational Web 2.0 technologies IN SCHOOL - where the
appropriate boundaries between teachers and students are maintained.

The more arguments I see for why this should be appropriate, the more my
motivation to advise that this restriction be by district policy.

This is not fear. It is the reality that some young teachers out there are
not quite yet making good decisions.

Here are two articles I wrote on this:


> Date:    Tue, 24 Mar 2009 17:38:26 -0400
> From:    Stacey Wicksall <swicksall@ROCHESTER.RR.COM>
> Subject: Re: One more FB Comment
> If it is true that adding students as friends on Facebook is tantamount
> to attending a rave, then would it not be a good thing to add as many
> students as possible to our friends list?  If I am not mistaken,  a rave
> is a wild party that involves teens imbibing large amounts of alcohol
> and taking any number of illicit drugs, right?  And these affairs go on
> without adult supervision, right?  Wouldn't an adult crashing the party
> be a GOOD thing?  Most professional educators would break up the party
> if it were out of hand.  Or perhaps the mere presence of a teacher at
> the site of a rave would be enough to turn the whole thing into a tea
> party.  I believe adult presence on Facebook can be a good thing because
> if we are professional educators then are intent should be noble.  We
> should be interested in the welfare of our students.  We should also
> keep accounts that we can be proud to admit to creating (and that can
> serve as models of appropriate Facebook use).  Why should a professional
> need to be scared of keeping a Facebook account and befriending students
> if their account and contact with students is respectable?  What does
> this fear tell us?  Is their an overwhelming consensus that educators
> are unprofessional individuals that cannot be trusted to behave
> appropriately and respectfully when communicating to students via a Web
> 2.0 technology?  Or perhaps we fear rising to this auspicious occasion
> that would offer us a chance to lead by example?  Do we cower in
> apprehension and self-loathing while permitting this "online rave" to
> continue on?  I am just curious...
> Stacey Wicksall
> Intermediate Teacher-Librarian

Nancy Willard, M.S., J.D.
Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use

Cyberbullying and Cyberthreats: Responding to the Challenge of Online Social
Aggression, Threats, and Distress (Research Press)

Cyber-Safe Kids, Cyber-Savvy Teens: Helping Young People Learn to Use the
Internet Safely and Responsibly (Jossey-Bass)

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