A new guide strives to help counselors better understand Facebook
With the fervent pace of social media and technology changes in today's society, a new guide is promoting a need for educators to be familiar with
The resource, "
"It's important to provide school counselors -- often the first line of defense in managing digital incidents with students -- the necessary tools and skills to be competent and confident," said Marsalil Hancock, president of iKeepSafe, in a press release.
The guide focuses on providing knowledge for counselors to effectively lead four suggested actions: helping develop school policies, responding to online incidents, detecting at-risk behavior on
For schools that have created social media policies for its students, a school counselor "may be on the front line in addressing cases where students fail to follow rules the school has set," the resource's authors write.
Along with students potentially violating school policies, other offenses that were once seen primarily on school grounds, such as bullying, are becoming more digital. Roughly 7 percent of high school students were bullied online during the 2008-2009 school year, according to a report released in 2011 by the
"Counselors can teach students how to identify bullying and how to report it, and provide a clear outline of steps that will be taken after a report is made," the guide notes. "This transparency is critical as students and their parents are far less likely to report incidents if they aren't confident that reporting will help the situation rather than make it worse."
The guide also encounters how counselors should teach students how to carry themselves on
"In today's world, part of students' reputations are comprised of what they write and do online," the resource states. "For young people, it is sometimes difficult to keep their long-term reputation in mind, especially when they can get caught up in the moment."
Counselors should be aware that what students put on a social media platform may be reviewed by college admissions officials. In a
But, the guide states, counselors can also encourage students to share "positive, respectful posts" that can ultimately enhance a student's reputation on
"As a school counselor, you are in a unique position to work with students and help them understand the long-term positive or negative impact their online reputations will have," the guide notes.
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