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    Board Policy
    District-Sponsored Social Media

     


     

    Community Relations
    The Governing Board recognizes the value of technology such as social media platforms in promoting community involvement and collaboration. The purpose of any official district social media platform shall be to further the district's vision and mission, support student learning and staff professional development, and enhance communication with students, parents/guardians, staff, and community members.

      

    The Superintendent or designee shall develop content guidelines and protocols for official district social media platforms to ensure the appropriate and responsible use of these resources and compliance with law, Board policy, and regulation.
     
    Guidelines for Content
    Official district social media platforms shall be used only for their stated purposes and in a manner consistent with this policy and administrative regulation.  By creating these official sites and allowing for public comment, the Board does not intend to create a limited public forum or otherwise guarantee an individual's right to free speech.
    The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that the limited purpose of the official district social media platforms is clearly communicated to users.  Each site shall contain a statement that specifies the site's purposes along with a statement that users are expected to use the site only for those purposes.  Each site shall also contain a statement that users are personally responsible for the content of their posts.
     
    Official district social media platforms may not contain content that is obscene, libelous, or so incites students as to create a clear and present danger of the commission of unlawful acts on school premises, violation of school rules, or substantial disruption of the school's orderly operation.
     
    Staff or students who post prohibited content shall be subject to discipline in accordance with district policies and administrative regulations.
     
    Users of official district social media platforms should be aware of the public nature and accessibility of social media and that information posted may be considered a public record subject to disclosure under the Public Records Act. The Board expects users to conduct themselves in a respectful, courteous, and professional manner.
     
    Privacy
    The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that the privacy rights of students, parents/guardians, staff, Board members, and other individuals are protected on official district social media platforms.
     
    Board policy pertaining to the posting of student photographs and the privacy of telephone numbers, home addresses, and email addresses, as specified in BP 1113 - District and School Web Sites, shall also apply to official district social media platforms.
     
    Social media and networking sites and other online platforms shall not be used by district employees to transmit confidential information about students, employees, or district operations.
     
    Definitions
    Social media means any online platform for collaboration, interaction, and active participation, including, but not limited to, social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, or blogs.
     
    Official district social media platform is a site authorized by the Superintendent or designee.  Sites that have not been authorized by the Superintendent or designee but that contain content related to the district or comments on district operations, such as a site created by a parent-teacher organization, booster club, or other school-connected organization or a student's or employee's personal site, are not considered official district social media platforms.
     
    Authorization for Official District Social Media Platforms
    The Superintendent or designee shall authorize the development of any official district social media platform. Teachers and coaches shall obtain approval from the principal before creating an official classroom or team social media platform.
     
    Guidelines for Content
    The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that official district social media platforms provide current information regarding district programs, activities, and operations, consistent with the goals and purposes of this policy and regulation.  Official district social media platforms shall contain content that is appropriate for all audiences.
     
    The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that copyright laws are not violated in the use of material on official district social media platforms.
     
    The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that official district social media platforms are regularly monitored.  Staff members responsible for monitoring content may remove posts based on viewpoint-neutral considerations, such as lack of relation to the site's purpose or violation of the district's policy, regulation, or content guidelines.
     
    Each official district social media platform shall prominently display:
    1. The purpose of the site along with a statement that users are expected to use the site only for those intended purposes.
    2. Information on how to use the security settings of the social media platform.
    3. A statement that the site is regularly monitored and that any inappropriate post will be promptly removed.  Inappropriate posts include those that: A. Are obscene, libelous, or so incite students as to create a clear and present danger of the commission of unlawful acts on school premises, violation of school rules, or substantial disruption of the school's orderly operation - B. Are not related to the stated purpose of the site, including, but not limited to, comments of a commercial nature, political activity, and comments that constitute discrimination or harassment
    4. Protocols for users, including expectations that users will communicate in a respectful, courteous, and professional manner.
    5. A statement that users are personally responsible for the content of their posts and that the district is not responsible for the content of external online platforms.
    6. A disclaimer that the views and comments expressed on the site are those of the users and do not necessarily reflect the views of the district.
    7. A disclaimer that any user's reference to a specific commercial product or service does not imply endorsement or recommendation of that product or service by the district.
    8. The individual(s) to contact regarding violation of district guidelines on the use of official district social media platforms.
     
    District employees who participate in official district social media platforms shall adhere to all applicable district policies and procedures, including, but not limited to, professional standards related to interactions with students.
     
    When appropriate, employees using official district social media platforms shall identify themselves by name and district title and include a disclaimer stating that the views and opinions expressed in their post are theirs alone and do not necessarily represent those of the district or school.
     
    All staff shall receive information about appropriate use of the official district social media platforms.
     
    Policy COTATI-ROHNERT PARK UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT
    adopted:   February 14, 2012 Rohnert Park, California
    Regulation COTATI-ROHNERT PARK UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT
    approved:   February 14, 2012 Rohnert Park, California