I became aware some of my students were planning to peacefully protest the rumored ban on Silly Bands Monday during Banned Book Week . While reading their facebook pages, I realized that some were using profanity regarding administrators’ concern with the bands. How should I handle this? I enlisted other faculty members with facebook pages and they wrote to some of the students for a teachable moment.
Have you read “Cyber-speak No Evil” by Michael D. Simpson on page 20 of the NEATODAY October/November 2010 issue? Michael is in the NEA Office of General Counsel and monitors issues on First Amendment cases involving social media.
The courts currently are divided on just how much freedom students have to express themselves even in their own homes. I anticipate this to increase. This is just an example of why I think we must be able to use social networking IN schools so we can properly demonstrate cyber-safety and ethics. I want students to express themselves, but in an ethical, dignified, and intellectual way. Okay, so I’m slightly delusional this weekend, but at the very minimum, I’d like students to refrain from bad language (if they cannot manage to avoid bad grammar).
In the meantime, aren’t you happy to hear that we are so concerned with silly bands and not improving instruction?