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Should Teachers and Students Be ‘Facebook Friends’?

Christine Lusey 2011/08/02 19:00:00
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Everyone’s on Facebook! Even your child’s teachers, probably. But is teacher/student communication via social networks a good idea?

Missouri doesn’t think so. The Show Me State just passed what’s already being called The Facebook Law, which bars contact between teachers and students on any site that includes a mechanism for private communication (like Facebook).

SB 54 actually creates the “Amy Hestir Student Protection Act,” named for a student who was molested by one of her teachers. The bill also mandates that allegations of sexual misconduct by a school employee be reported within 24 hours.

It would hold school districts liable if they fail to disclose to another district that an employee was either dismissed or allowed to resign after allegations of sexual misconduct.

Additionally, “a registered sex offender, or a person required to be registered as a sex offender, is prohibited from being a candidate for school board.”

Did we really need a law for that? Are a lot of sex offenders campaigning for school board positions? It seems like a sex offender school board candidate in Missouri would be kind of a long-shot candidate anyway.

And “crimes of sexual contact with a student while on public school property as well as second and third degree sexual misconduct are added to the offenses for which a teacher's license or certificate may be revoked.” Well, you’d certainly hope so!

SB 54 takes effect August 28 of this year.

Read More: http://newsfeed.time.com/2011/08/01/in-missouri-te...

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Top Opinion

  • Tonya Edwards 2011/08/03 03:42:14
    Undecided
    Tonya Edwards
    +12
    There are some really bad ass teachers that are great to have on facebook. They were my mentors in school and I can still contact them outside of school. (Now that I've graduated.) I can see how it could be an issue though..
    teachers facebook mentors school contact school ive graduated issue facebook teacher

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  • Ami Kate 2011/10/16 01:26:17
    Undecided
    Ami Kate
    UNSURE...
  • Billy the kid 2011/09/10 14:38:04
    No
    Billy the kid
    If they merely want to be 'buddies' then that's ok. On the other hand, if they have a genuine desire to educate their students to the best of their ability, then I think that it's better that they don't lose that 'aura of authority' that the very best teachers seem to have about them, by being 'Facebook Friends'!
  • stevegtexas@aol.com 2011/09/10 14:32:34 (edited)
  • SmithBandit 2011/08/23 22:56:04
    Yes
    SmithBandit
    +1
    Teachers are not the only child molesters out there
  • stevegt... SmithBa... 2011/09/10 14:34:50 (edited)
  • SmithBa... stevegt... 2011/09/12 02:50:35
    SmithBandit
    Say what you will about horse and buggies, but they are pretty eco-friendly, and they double as a method of transportation and a pet! All the people with their dogs that sit around and don't do anything can go get a horse and buggy for practical purposes!
  • cateycat 2011/08/19 16:38:06
    Undecided
    cateycat
    I think you should have 2 accounts. Thats what I have. One for friends and under my real name and then one under an old nickname for teachers. I only go on my teacher one when i need help with something. And yes it ha my current teachers on it to. If i had a rough day with a teacher i can say whatever i want on my friend profile. (And you would be surprised but most teachers are on at like 11 oclock... creepy)
  • MaggieRose 2011/08/18 05:32:18
    Yes
    MaggieRose
    +1
    That would be awesome. I have been trying to get teachers to be my friends on facebook
  • stevegt... MaggieRose 2011/09/10 14:37:45 (edited)
  • steven.w.leak 2011/08/14 11:43:20
    Yes
    steven.w.leak
    I suppose under the social conditions of today as opposed to when i went to school it is better than personable friendships,although in the 60's and early 70's it was considered okay to be at a teachers house as a friend or to go bowling,fishing etc with them.
  • Jewel Rivera 2011/08/13 07:59:44
    Undecided
    Jewel Rivera
    if the student has graduated then it shouldn't be too much of a problem.. but when the student is currently in school i don't think its a good idea.
  • B.L.I. 2011/08/12 10:36:24
    Undecided
    B.L.I.
    I have teachers as Facebook friends, but only the ones from previous years. I know they're not going to be my teachers anymore, so I don't really mind that I have them as friends. I can see why you wouldn't add a teacher who's currently teaching you: it could have a big effect on your studies/grades.
  • famen 2011/08/11 17:56:11
    No
    famen
    no if you are still studying and..
    yes if you already graduate..
  • Tigger68 2011/08/10 14:35:20
    No
    Tigger68
    This would just be as a safety precaution for both.
  • ♥Gabs1697♥ 2011/08/10 13:05:28
    Yes
    ♥Gabs1697♥
    Why not?!
  • conkers 2011/08/09 18:00:54
    Undecided
    conkers
    As part of the school's rule book, they can not be friends on the interwebs. However, after I graduated, I added them and they're great folks.
  • Wayne 2011/08/06 02:57:27
    Undecided
    Wayne
    it's actually a rule at my school that teachers can't be friends with their students on Facebook or they face the possibility of being fired. I don't see a lot of harm in it, really. I mean, if they're so concerned about the teachers being sex offenders and 'conversing' with their students, shouldn't they run background checks before they hire them in the first place???
  • <3GerardWay<3 2011/08/05 06:09:57
    Undecided
    <3GerardWay<3
    if the ADULT teacher friends an UNDERAGE student.....people jump to conclusions
  • ♫♪‼Chloey Arddun‼♫♪ 2011/08/05 00:53:25
    Undecided
    ♫♪‼Chloey Arddun‼♫♪
    meant to say no. It is creepy and allows them to snoop through your personal life even more then they already do.
    I mean seriously, who wants their teacher to come up to them and say "so I heard are dating so and so" or "how was that party last night? heard you got pretty wasted"
  • American Nate 2011/08/04 16:45:06
    Undecided
    American Nate
    When I graduated I did
  • Wahvlvke 2011/08/04 12:07:49
    No
    Wahvlvke
    Not no but hell no. It is just not appropriate.
  • steven.... Wahvlvke 2011/08/14 11:46:17
    steven.w.leak
    why not appropriate? what is going through your mind to come to this conclusion?
  • Wahvlvke steven.... 2011/08/14 13:21:47
    Wahvlvke
    A teacher should be a teacher ... not a friend, just like a parent should be a parent ... not a friend. Teacher student contact should happen in the classroom or other school environment. That is how I feel about it.
  • Devonly 2011/08/04 10:24:04
    No
    Devonly
    probly 99 percent of the time it isn't a big deal, it's that 1 percent that screws it up for everyone else.
  • Tammra Goodman 2011/08/04 06:04:45
    Yes
    Tammra Goodman
    +1
    if i could have talked to my teachers when i couldnt talk to my foster providers....it would have helped me alot...i also would have been more likely to get to know my fellow class mates outside of school if we had had this option...i am not afraid of the teachers doing bad things to the students.....the number of bad teachers is not as high as the media makes it seem...if a predator comes into a kids life it is more likely to be from the family than from outside....it is just fact....it is sad to think that there used to be a time when i could actually go to my teachers house for a poetry club meeting and no one would think less of her..,.now all the type a personalities that have kids only see the worst and keep that kind of bond from developing between teachers and their students...i think that facebook could allow that to happen....
  • Farrokh... Tammra ... 2011/08/04 06:06:54
    Farrokh Bulsara
    +3
    Valid point, it is not like we are talking about Catholic Priests here.
  • Tammra ... Farrokh... 2011/08/04 06:07:35
    Tammra Goodman
    +1
    yikes...yes you are
  • Farrokh... Tammra ... 2011/08/04 06:08:35
    Farrokh Bulsara
    +2
    Would I derail a discussion to take stabs at a special interest group I dislike?

    NEVAR!
  • Tammra ... Farrokh... 2011/08/04 06:09:00
    Tammra Goodman
    +1
    yeah so
  • Farrokh Bulsara 2011/08/04 05:48:24 (edited)
    Undecided
    Farrokh Bulsara
    +1
    I am torn.



    While keeping children safe from sexual predators is important, the sex offender registry law is flawed (at least here in the US).



    An example; a friend of mine has a friend (yep, met him once), who is a registered sex offender. He was drunk at a bar, and the men's room was out of order. The bartender would not let him use the ladies room (they were single occupancy and he had the keys), so he went out back to urinate behind the bar. A married woman was kissing a man who was not her husband out there as well... so to speak... as in, not on the mouth... and to keep him from possibly embarrassing her, had him arrested for indecent exposure. He never even saw them out there. So, for the rest of his life he gets the same stigma attached to his name as a child rapist, because the registry is black and white. You are a sex offender, or you are not one. All of this because of bad judgment when he was drunk. Had he wet his pants, he would probably be in the same boat.



    If you want to keep your children safe from sexual predators, do NOT let them on the internet. It is a well know fact that 90% of the women on the internet are guys posing as them (especially the lesbians), and about 80% of the teenagers on the internet are much older then they profess.



    Now I can understand why thi...



    I am torn.



    While keeping children safe from sexual predators is important, the sex offender registry law is flawed (at least here in the US).



    An example; a friend of mine has a friend (yep, met him once), who is a registered sex offender. He was drunk at a bar, and the men's room was out of order. The bartender would not let him use the ladies room (they were single occupancy and he had the keys), so he went out back to urinate behind the bar. A married woman was kissing a man who was not her husband out there as well... so to speak... as in, not on the mouth... and to keep him from possibly embarrassing her, had him arrested for indecent exposure. He never even saw them out there. So, for the rest of his life he gets the same stigma attached to his name as a child rapist, because the registry is black and white. You are a sex offender, or you are not one. All of this because of bad judgment when he was drunk. Had he wet his pants, he would probably be in the same boat.



    If you want to keep your children safe from sexual predators, do NOT let them on the internet. It is a well know fact that 90% of the women on the internet are guys posing as them (especially the lesbians), and about 80% of the teenagers on the internet are much older then they profess.



    Now I can understand why this was thought to be a good idea. Teachers can watch for cyber bullies, and predators, but they still will not have access to private messages on Facebook, which is where these types of communications will move.



    Privacy is good thing. The more freedoms they remove, the easier it becomes for them to take away the rest of them. If someone wants to add one of their teachers as a friend, let them. I was friends with many of my teachers in school, and had nothing to hide from them.
    (more)
  • MLor 2011/08/04 02:17:52
    No
    MLor
    Facebook is just a bad deal all the way around.
  • steven.... MLor 2011/08/14 11:47:34
    steven.w.leak
    how so?
  • Willie 2011/08/03 22:26:49
    Undecided
    Willie
    +1
    I can see two sides to this. A teacher certainly doesn't want to have even the appearance of an improper relationship with any student, and doesn't want to appear to show favoritism toward any student. There may also be aspects of a teacher's life that he/she doesn't want students to be privvy to. Facebook has enough privacy settings to take care of that, and a teacher should probably avail him/herself of those if he/she is using Facebook.

    On the other hand, social networking is the way kids (especially high school kids) communicate, learn, share and basically live their lives today. A teacher could use Facebook as a tool for teaching, communicating and interacting (in a proper way) with students during off-school hours.

    I'm a high school teacher, and I'm seriously considering setting up a second Facebook page for interacting with my current students. I think Facebook could be a valuable teaching tool, but I don't need my students trying to interact with my mother, sisters, old college buddies, etc.

    As it stands now, though, I turn down any friend requests from current students.
  • Farrokh... Willie 2011/08/04 06:06:16
    Farrokh Bulsara
    +1
    I think that could be a brilliant tool for students as you propose it. Why not make a fan page (like the celebs have).

    You could post what chapters need to be read, etc... What has been assigned as homework for reminders. This could be good for legitimately sick children who missed a day of class, do not want to fall behind on their lessons, and possibly do not have the best friends to ask about what was covered in class.

    Heck, you could even toss out tips and such for your classes, and occasionally give the answer to a bonus/extra credit question for an upcoming test to motivate them to check it often.

    A fan page, or even a group (Or whatever they call them now) would limit them being able to read posts about your personal life (and those from your personal life's posts).

    Bravo for trying to come up with ways to use modern technology and trends to reach students, you clearly care about providing proper education.
  • Willie Farrokh... 2011/08/04 19:06:00
    Willie
    Thank you. I try.
  • GoDucks5 2011/08/03 22:23:12
    Undecided
    GoDucks5
    I don't know but none of my teachers want me to add me on facebook.
  • Queen B 2011/08/03 21:09:47
    No
    Queen B
    That's one reason I'm not on facebook.....I don't need a bunch of past or present students asking me to be their facebook friend.
  • Lerro DeHazel 2011/08/03 20:55:38
    Yes
    Lerro DeHazel
    Many of the younger female teachers should be close-friends to teenage boys . . . That seems to be the trend now . . .
  • Sister Jean 2011/08/03 19:19:46
    Yes
    Sister Jean
    retired ones like I
  • ed 2011/08/03 19:00:37
    Undecided
    ed
    That's a hard question---on one hand misconduct by either party could foster. On the other hand it could be another tool to reach students and help connect. It really depends on the individuals. You can't really govern behaviour until stuff happens. Don't outlaw it until a problem arises and then restrict all involved. No reason to punish those who use it as it was intended.
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