Albeit for higher ed, I really like the way Dr. Justin Marquis gives many different options on how schools can use social media in this beautifully created infographic. I also think K-12 schools could definitely take a cue on how to start to differentiate their communication to their internal and external communities accordingly:
1. In the Classroom
2. School Pride
3. To Acquire Potential Students
4. General Outreach
5. Professional Development
I believe if we can use Social Media in some of the ways mentioned on this infographic with the intention to differentiate our communication to our various audiences, our ongoing, overflowing, busting-at-the-seams email inboxes would get a break and would help to change our paradigm on how we communicate internally with our faculty and staff and externally with our school community at large. I know many schools struggle in this way to get email under control but when you think about it, most school emails are not considered “private” information but are often announcements, reminders, or even updates on different school life. I vote we pull all of those types of emails which deal with announcements, reminders, and updates out of our inbox and put them on a twitter feed with a specific hashtag designating what those posts are. For example, we could create the following hashtags for the following:
•Announcements: #ksannounce and #ksannounce1. By putting a number next to each post, we can correspond a collated list of announcements to help everyone keep things straight and have it reside on a blogpost…hmm, this might be up for discussion on some admin level but I definitely think it is worth a try!
In addition, I believe using Social Media in these ways helps to reach people who wouldn’t be otherwise reached. For example, parents are often kept out of the loop in so many ways on what their children are doing in the classroom. If a school is fortunate enough to have a Classroom Management System (CMS) which offer parents logins, parents may stay in the loop that way. However, most schools can’t acquire large CMSs or they just haven’t got there. Using Social Media in ways Dr. Justin mentions here is very effective.
Check out the infographic and see if you might be able to apply how to differentiate between public and private communication within your school communities and with the world at large. It may be scary for some at first but I know you’d have huge tech and moral support from your progressive teachers and your tech help folks! I think email inboxes themselves would rise up and offer a concerted cheer as well!:)