BYOT & Social Media Meet AUP

BYOT Technology

Image Credit – Creative Commons

BYOT and Social Media present new and exciting possibilities for all community members of any 9-12 boarding school. As such, the operational envelope for all members should be defined. In my opinion, if one identifies a need or a problem in a boarding school community, that person should offer both the need/problem and his/her suggested solution.

I created a BYOT/Social Media Policy that I think would fit an imaginary boarding school, since I am not currently employed. However, I would not implement this without the whole document being vetted by the community. It is unrealistic to think that we will create a “perfect” document that meets the desires of every single person. However, we can and should listen to all members of the community so that all do indeed have a voice in adapting and modifying the document. Since that school does not exist, and I have no idea of the actual staff, parents or students, I listed my collaboration plan at the beginning of the document.

I not only used the Resources offered, I used a boarding school I respect as a model for a plan that I feel will approach the BYOT/Social Media guidelines in a way that promotes a positive experience for all stakeholders.

My concerns with BYOT and Social Media are that everything in our lives moves to instant gratification. The answers we seek are immediately available. The picture we want to post is online before we get home. Unfortunately, we tend to react emotionally just as fast, taking issues to social media that maybe should never make the cut.

Faculty/Staff are primarily are young educators and for many their first place of employment. Often, the line between the professional and students gets blurred in the eyes of these young educators. Setting parameters for device use seems logical.

Parents also seem to react with intense passions. Including them in these from the outset will help keep them framed in the heat of a moment.

Lastly, students will see All, Faculty/Staff, and Parents are addressed prior to their specific demographic. I truly think this will help model the expectations the community needs to prosper. If not, then I think the revision process will take us to a livable document.


About "B" Bernheim
“B”, his nickname, returns to the other side of the desk after many years. Graduating from UNC-Charlotte in 1983 with a BA in Education (K-12), he entered active service with the US Army. He began teaching high school upon completion of his tour of duty. B taught Language Arts and Social Studies for one year at the middle school level. English, Composition, Public Speaking, Theater, Forensics, and Technical Theater are among the subjects he has taught in public high school settings. Most recently, he was a Strategies of Instruction teacher, Assistant Dean of Students, dorm parent, girls’ hockey coach and rock climbing instructor at The Forman School in Litchfield, CT. The Forman School is a 9-12 boarding school specifically targeting students who learn differently.

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