Social Networking in Wichita Falls ISD Classrooms

Wichita Falls ISD teachers are using facebook and twitter to help connect with and educate their students. Some parents here question the safety of their children and what is being exposed.    
Newschannel 6 took to the streets and spoke with parents about their concerns then took their questions to the doors of WFISD. We got some mixed reaction from parents.

It is a very touchy subject with parents. Most of the parents Newschannel 6 spoke to
agree with integrating social media in classrooms, but their main concern lies with how that content is regulated.

Social networking may have a number of positive effects in the classroom, but the idea of using facebook and twitter still does not sit well with some parents.

Wichita Falls ISD parent, Alvaro Chacon says, "I'm not against it I'm just not completely for it. As far as the lack of ability to monitor it. There are so many avenues to have so many people see your kids and they don't realize that."

It is those social media avenues along with the potential knowledge they can bring a student is what has the Gould's trusting in their sons second grade teacher.

Courtney Gould, another WFISD parent says, "The kids are going to get on the internet anyway. They're going to learn how to do it and most kids know how to do more stuff then the parents. So by learning in school they will learn how to be safe instead of what not to do."

Casey Hunter is the Wichita Falls ISD Instructional Technology Coordinator. She says the students safety always is a top priority.

Casey Hunter comments, "We do want our students to have the ability to use these sites, but we also have to monitor what they do. We are regulated to make sure we keep kids safe."

And in keeping Wichita Falls ISD students safe, Hunter tells Newschannel 6 teachers are educated and  advised to keep their on-line activity strictly professional. Teachers can be friends with students on their personal facebook pages but it is discouraged.

Hunters says, "We just discourage it because it just leaves a gray area and we just want to make sure that teachers are very professional and that they are sharing information that is pertinent to teachers and students."

Newschannel 6 asked WFISD how they monitor the teachers pages to make sure the content and the relationships are appropriate. The WFISD does not monitor them.

Teachers are the only ones regulating their personal, group, or fan pages. So it is ultimately up to the teacher to keep off any inappropriate material on those public pages.

Natalie Garcia,  Newschannel 6