School board discusses social media guidelines

Teachers urged to get parents' OK when using new media, web applications

The Pleasanton school board reviewed and provided feedback to staff about the school district's social media guidelines at Tuesday night's meeting.

The social media guidelines are for faculty and staff, students and parents.

According to coordinator of communication and community engagement Nicole Steward, the social media guidelines have been created as engaging, collaborating, learning and sharing in digital environments is a part of 21st century learning.

"It will create an atmosphere of trust and individual accountability for students and teachers," Steward added.

One of the guidelines the district encourages faculty and staff to follow is communicating and receiving parent permission when any new social media or web application will be used in the classroom.

For students, the guidelines focus on safety and security, as well as copyright and identity.

"We want our students to know that nothing you post online is confidential or privateā€¦even if you have the highest level security," said Steward.

The school district encourages parents to participate in social media projects, but direct parents not to use classroom social media sites for any illegal activity, including violation of data privacy laws.

Steward also announced to the school board a phone application the district has been working on called "Parent Link." The application will me similar to PUSD's E-Connection, where parents can choose what school to receive news updates from – except the updates would be notifications on the cell phone.

She said she would like to have the application ready by April.

In other business:

* Board trustees unanimously appointed Mary Ellen Cote as the administrative assistant of human resources.

* During the community comment section, two people commended the district's leadership for their work in the district.

"Due to our leadership, the work of educating our children is making leaps and bounds during an extremely challenging period," said Lisa Highfill, Pleasanton schools instructional technology coach.

"All too frequently, this podium is used for loud voices raised in anger, and sometimes with some very ugly things being said," Jerri Long stated. "Too often we don't come here to thank you, as I would like to thank you for having the courage to have such a magnificent mission."

Former board trustee Jeff Bowser also addressed the board about continuing to work on the school facilities and technology crisis.

* Board members recognized two Pleasanton teachers, as well as the district's Classified Employee of the Year and the award's nominees.

Leah Perez was recognized for being Alameda County's Dual Immersion Teacher of the Year.

Jonathan Grantham, Amador Valley's director of bands, was recognized for receiving the California Music Education Association (CMEA) Band Educator Award.

Linda Flagler was named PUSD's Classified Employee of the Year. The award nominees included: Patty Frankson, Catherine McCarthy, Pauline Schroeder, Cyndy Bormann, Traci Sweeney, Janet Koerlin, Janet Bing, Winston Andrews, Dawnene Stephenson, Nancy Rae, Lucy Garcia, Vicki Conflenti and Bhuvava Rajan.

The next school board meeting is scheduled for March 24 at 7 p.m. in the district's boardroom, 4665 Bernal Avenue.

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