The demand by your students, parents, business leaders and community to ensure that digital communications are safe, effortless and effective is complicated by the ever changing and accelerating speed of social media. As social media continues to evolve, how can your district keep pace?
Putting people and human interaction at the center of day-to-day activities is more important than ever before. Relationship building, online communication, collaboration, and cultivating influence are fast becoming core and required skill sets to succeed in today's connected economy. Proper social media usage is the key.
School administrators and career and technical education leaders should embrace social media to improve student safety, employability, soft skills and college and career readiness. Key questions that need to be addressed include:
- What is the role of social media in education?
- How can social media be employed to meet the needs of your intended audiences -students, parents, teachers, business leaders and community?
- How can schools effectively engage and employ social media to achieve results?
Social media education in school districts achieves three core outcomes, namely:
1. Improved student college and career readiness,
2. Enhanced student soft skills and employability, and
3. Professional development for teachers, staff and administrators.
Shaping social media communication skill sets and digital citizenship is a “must do” priority. The challenges to building a program that balances engagement with efficacy include:
- Providing equal access to education opportunities for all,
- Maintaining currency of social media curriculum,
- Training district personnel to achieve needed scale,
- Justifying the investment based on budgets, and
- Demonstrating measurable outcomes.
- Incorporate a social media program that addresses state CTE competencies related to digital and business communications.
- Train-to-teach through professional development of the CTE staff.
- Involve administration, including the Superintendent, Assistant Superintendent, Principal, Vice Principals, CTE Director and CTE teachers to lead by example.
Insights | Take Aways
- Social media has disrupted communications and requires a disciplined approach in school districts.
- The pace of innovation will lead to more personalized interactions and responsible social media usage is key to student college and career readiness.
- Digital transformation in school districts may be thought as the third stage of embracing digital technologies: digital competence → digital literacy→ digital transformation.