Twitter use for depts
Some of the school depts are looking at using twitter. Fair enough and i can see why but i don't know enough about it as i don't use it. We have a school twitter page at the moment and hasnt been updated for years but I and the head are keen to get it up and running again, but the trouble is who should update it?
I was wondering if any schools have twitter pages, who updates them and also do they have depts who have their own or do staff ask to put updates on the main school feed? Do head of departments have the username and password for the main school account to tweet their own news when they want?
I am concerned about messages being set to depts rather than the main school one as the depts are managed really by one person rather than the school.
If we went down the route of twitter for depts, we would have a look at a twitter page on the website with all the feeds but this could get messy.
Just want to get a few ideas thats all.
Ok, firstly I'd suggest you think about your policy or guidance. The Head needs to decide (perhaps along with your knowledge of the platform) what is suitable to publish, and if you are happy with communicating (or following) pupils, staff and parents. I'd suggest DM's are not permitted. Teachers guidelines explain that all communication should be transparent and open to scrutiny.
We have set up Twitter accounts for every department. @schoolEnglish @schoolMaths etc. Some departments use it regularly (and really well), others not at all. In each department they have decided who has access (usually the most twitter/web savvy). Our main school twitter account doesn't get used as much as I'd like (I think it looks bad when the latest tweet is three months ago). But once your departments get going, it's not hard for the main account to find things to retweet.
It's best to make it clear to your followers what type of account you are using. If it's a broadcast account, say so, or you risk people asking questions that nobody replies too.
Hope that helps.
Forgot to mention this link... http://irte.eu/fe Alan has some excellent thoughts on twitter use for teachers.
We did this, and after a month or two of activity they one by one lapsed into silence and most haven't had an update in over 6 months. I started removing them from the website when they got to three months without a tweet - nobody has ever noticed.
As silly as it sounds, I'd run a quick risk assessment to help plan policy regarding this. A Twitter account has the potential to cause a lot of damage in the wrong hands as companies have found out:
1) You need to have a buck stops here for the account, someone in overall charge who decides what to post and who accesses it.
2) You need to ensure the password is secure and not used elsewhere. This stops one service getting hacked and the leaked details subsequently used on the school account(s)! Also have a clear backup plan for recovering a compromised account and the subsequent fallout.
3) You need a clear policy as to what is and is not suitable for the account and the steps to take if something unsuitable is posted. This even extends as far as who you follow as they can show an affiliation with someone, especially for companies. Everything you post or retweet reflects company opinion, not the user's opinion no matter what legal text is thrown about.
4) Know who is posting on the feed. For single users this is easy as it is whoever is in charge of the account. For multiple posters you may want to do what BBCTravelAlert do and have the user's initials at the end of each post (although this is easy to forge!).
we have a main school twitter account which is used quite extensively alongside our school Facebook page. Departments such as PE, RE, ICT and Science are using twitter more so than the others and for those relevant bits of information from our twitter accounts we retweet them on our school account.
Both the twitter and Facebook pages are managed by me (not department) and I would say they are quite light touch and don't add too much to a workload that is busy enough!
We have a school Twitter account that is only posted to by me.
It's been on and off for a few months but now it's really getting going, especially with a few events we have coming up.
Followers include pupils, parents, other schools, sports people/teams, etc. and it really motivates the pupils when we get a tweet off the local radio station congratulating us on recent rugby results, etc.
We're promoting an event coming up soon and have made a relevant hashtag. People can post using the tag throughout the event and we'll bring it all together at the end for all to see.