Personal Technology and Social Media; Usage and Conduct
DAOES recognizes the increasingly-important role that technology plays in the educational process as well as in the personal lives of the students, their families, and DAOES employees. This Policy is intended to foster a thoughtful, responsible use of social media and related technological communication tools in a way that does not disrupt, create unnecessary distractions to, or adversely impact the educational process or the interpersonal relationships among the students, faculty and staff.
Includes - Means “includes without limitation” or “includes, but is not limited to.”
Social media - Media for social interaction, using highly accessible communication techniques through the use of web-based and mobile technologies to turn communication into interactive dialogue which includes but are not limited:
Personal technology - Any device that is not owned or leased by the District or otherwise authorized for District use and: (1) transmits sounds, images, text, messages, videos, or electronic information, (2) electronically records, plays, or stores information, or (3) accesses the Internet, or private communication or information networks. This includes smartphones such as BlackBerry®, Android®, iPhone®, and other devices, such as, iPads® and iPods®.
- Social networking sites (e.g. Facebook, MySpace);
- Micro blogging sites (e.g. Twitter);
- Video clips and Podcasts (e.g. You Tube); and
- Discussion forums.
Usage and ConductAll District employees who use personal technology and social media shall:
- Adhere to the high standards for appropriate school relationships in policy 5:120, Ethics and Conduct at all times, regardless of the ever-changing social media and personal technology platforms available. This includes District employees posting images or private information about themselves or others in a manner accessible to students and other employees that is inappropriate as defined by policy 5:20, Workplace Harassment Prohibited; 5:120, Ethics and Conduct; 6:235, Access to Electronic Networks; 7:20, Harassment of Students Prohibited; and the Ill. Code of Educator Ethics, 23 Ill.Admin.Code §22.20.
- Use a DAOES-provided or supported method whenever possible to communicate with students and their parents/guardians. Employees shall discourage students from making contact through the employee’s personal technology or social media. Repeated attempts by a student to make such contact shall be reported to the employee’s supervior.
- Not interfere with or disrupt the educational or working environment, or the delivery of education or educational support services.
- Comply with policy 5:130, Responsibilities Concerning Internal Information. This means that personal technology and social media may not be used to share, publish, or transmit information about students, including student record information or images of students and/or DAOES employees without proper approval or consent obtained pursuant to state and federal student and personnel records laws.
- Refrain from using the District’s logos without permission and follow Board policy 5:170, Copyright, and all District copyright compliance procedures.
- Use personal technology and social media for personal purposes only during non-work times or hours. Any duty-free use must occur during times and places that the use will not interfere with job duties or otherwise be disruptive to the school environment or its operation.
- Assume all risks associated with the use of personal technology and social media at school or school-sponsored activities, including students’ viewing of inappropriate Internet materials through the District employee’s personal technology or social media. The Board expressly disclaims any responsibility for imposing content filters, blocking lists, or monitoring of its employees’ personal technology and social media.
- Be subject to remedial and any other appropriate disciplinary action for violations of this policy ranging from prohibiting the employee from possessing or using any personal technology or social media at school to dismissal and/or indemnification of the District for any losses, costs, or damages, including reasonable attorney fees, incurred by the District relating to, or arising out of, any violation of this policy.
The Director shall:
- Inform DAOES employees about this policy.
- Direct Building Principals to annually:
- Inform their building staff about the importance of maintaining high standards in their school relationships.
- Remind their building staff that those who violate Board policy will be subject to remedial and any other appropriate disciplinary action up to and including dismissal.
- Build awareness of this policy with students, parents, and the community.
- Periodically review this policy and any procedures with District employee representatives and electronic network system administrator(s) and present proposed changes to the Board.
LEGAL REF.: 105 ILCS 5/21-23 and 5/21-23a.
Ill. Human Rights Act, 775 ILCS 5/5A-102.
Code of Ethics for Ill. Educators, 23 Ill.Admin.Code §22.20.
Garcetti v. Ceballos, 547 U.S. 410 (2006).
Pickering v. High School Dist. 205, 391 U.S. 563 (1968).
Mayer v. Monroe County Community School Corp., 474 F.3d 477 (7th Cir. 2007).
CROSS REF.: 5:20 (Workplace Harassment Prohibited), 5:30 (Hiring Process and Criteria), 5:120 (Ethics and Conduct), 5:130 (Responsibilities Concerning Internal Information), 5:150 (Personnel Records), 5:170 (Copyright), 5:200 (Terms and Conditions of Employment and Dismissal), 6:235 (Access to Electronic Networks), 7:20 (Harassment of Students Prohibited), 7:340 (Student Records)
ADOPTED: April 19, 2012