How can districts best utilize social media?
- In a recent speech, Luvelle Brown, superintendent of New York's Ithaca City School District, encouraged cautious district leaders to take the plunge and use social media to improve community engagement.
- Brown and other education leaders contributed to a new guide from K12 Insight called the "Definitive School Leader’s Guide to Navigating Social Media," providing district leaders with strategies for refining their district’s social media approach, as well as their own.
- The tips include developing a plan ahead of time to prepare employees and set goals, proactively communicating the district’s successes, and encouraging dialogue with parents, community members, and students.
Brown, who won eSchool’s Tech-Savvy Superintendent Award last year, has strong words for his counterparts who see Facebook and Twitter as a distraction, rather than a tool: “We have no excuses. We have to be active on these tools as instructional leaders, to give people a sense of what we are thinking and where we are,” he told other New York superintendents during the New York Council of Superintendents fall meeting.
Many districts have been slow to consider social media apps as an instructional tool, but they’re a natural fit with community engagement goals. If it’s done well, Brown says it can become a primary way for community members to receive information. He told the gathered superintends that community members now use Facebook and Twitter to verify the news they hear reported about the district in the media.
- eSchool News 4 steps to mastering social media