Award Resource Area – Facebook
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Facebook has been recognised as the place where parents ‘are’ the most on social media. Surveys carried out across hundreds of families have shown that parents reach for Facebook when they want to connect and know what’s happening in school.
It’s more than just a one-way pull of information of course. With social media the world now expects two way vertical and horizontal communication across networks of people and friends.
Many schools have realised that there is a super opportunity to achieve a managed sense of increased transparency between families and the school. The effect is to lower barriers to engagement, improve relationships and reduce friction in the parent journey.
Proactive and timely use of social media impacts positively upon the well-being of everyone in the community when used as part of the school communication strategy. In the resource folder above you will find best practice guidance, how-to and next steps information if your school hasn’t yet taken steps or has had a false start.
Facebook is a tool that when used proactively, effectively and creatively can amplify and share all the good things about your school. Nurtured well, there’s nothing more powerful than a supportive parent community. It’s our experience that over 99% of a community is actively batting for the school to succeed and they will become part of your school promotions effort given the opportunity to do so.
One of the 5 ‘Core’ elements is that your school has a Social Media Team with at least one member of the Senior Leadership Team within it. This unifies the Social Media strategy and if your Social Media Team has representatives from all levels across your school, your Social Media use will reflect this.
Bringing its school values and ethos to life is one of the most effective and powerful things your Social Team can do. Above in the resources area, you will find guidance to ensure your school understands what this can look like and what the results can be using the Facebook platform.
Promoting your school is a pre-cursor in many ways to offering and developing a relationship where your school trusts its community to the point where engagement on a deeper level is possible. If all a school did was promote how great it was it would miss out on significant opportunities to take on the ideas, energy and perspective of parents.
Engagement in public, via the school page, can often be low level in nature but still have value; parents appreciate being reminded of what’s happening and when for example. Public engagement on more pithy issues can also work well when initiated by school in the right way in the public gaze. How well they’re handled can reflect well on the school to future and existing parents.
Deeper level engagement through the Facebook platform is an innovative way to save school time and money while getting the ‘good stuff’ it needs to help change happen with the input and ultimately support of it’s community. Above, in the resources folder, you will find activities that will support your drive to ensure the best possible outcomes for curriculum based Twitter use within your school.
*Professional engagement within the school or across a multi-site structure of some sort, such as a teaching alliance or MAT, is also possible now with exciting opportunities to innovate and make change come about in different ways.
In the folder above there are resources and activities to help you explore these areas in more detail. *The Award does not expect you to be using social media in this way.