How to start a Facebook page for your school

By admin
30 June 2014

Does your school have its own Facebook page? If not, it’s high time to start one. Spend a few hours during the school holidays to get the page up and running.

Social media law expert Emma Sadleir says a Facebook page can be an excellent resource for schools.

“Parents can be kept up to date about school events and the page can be used to market the school to prospective learners,” she says.

David Hartstein, a partner at a company that builds websites for nonprofit organisations, says Facebook is an excellent way for schools to keep in touch with families and rapidly share information.

“If a school consistently shares new, accurate information learners and families will start to rely on the school’s Facebook page as a source of what’s happening at the school,” he says.

He suggests schools share the following information:

  • School events, for instance sports matches.
  • Upcoming events, such as exams that start in a fortnight’s time.
  • Announcements.
  • Pictures and videos about school events.
  • Information to attract staff and learners to the school.
  • Questions and discussions to get feedback from parents.

Create a Facebook page – step by step

You can create a Facebook page for your school in 10 minutes – even if you don’t have an existing Facebook account.

Watch this video for step-by-step instructions on how to create a Facebook page for your school.

If your school doesn’t yet have a Facebook page discuss the idea with the school principal before starting one. Emma suggests that a limited number of people be given administrator’s rights to the page. “This makes it easier to control who may share information on the page,” she says.

What the law says about pictures of learners on Facebook

Emma says pictures of children can be used for marketing purposes, so schools may share pictures of their learners.

Most schools have a clause covering this issue in their contracts with parents. “Sometimes parents specifically ask that pictures of their children are not used for marketing purposes in which case the schools must adhere to this request.”

Emma suggests the school’s Facebook page administrator keeps a list of these learners on hand.

Emma also suggests the following security measures for schools wanting to use Facebook:

  • Never tag children in pictures.
  • If parents contact the school, asking that their children’ pictures be removed, this must be done immediately.
  • Don’t share too many pictures of children. One or two of the same learner is enough.
  • Limit the number of administrators with access to the page.
  • Don’t allow parents to upload pictures on behalf of the school.
  • Monitor parents and others users’ comments to ensure learners’ human rights are protected.
Click here for more tips about Facebook security for schools.

Shané Barnard

Sources: Fractuslearning, Mashable.

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