The articles below were shared with the INF506 Diigo group, Social Networking for Information Professionals
School libraries are bound by the policies of the school and/or education departments. This does not preclude school libraries from developing their own policies in relation to social media strategy but I found little evidence of these online. Many school policies are kept within the school and not published so examples of school library social media policies or school social media policies were difficult to find.
This slideshare by Judy O’Connell encourages teacher librarians to become competent social media users. The twenty first century learning environment is constantly changing and teacher librarians must adapt. The internet is now a participatory medium and social networks are integral in our lives. School libraries need to be involved in social media and it begins with teacher librarians being active users within their with personal learning networks and their personal lives. Judy provides advice for teacher librarians on how to get started with policy planning, examples of best practice, tools and strategies for implementation. Specific instructions are provided for using Facebook and Twitter in school libraries.
The National Library of New Zealand provides services to school libraries. This comprehensive guide explains what social media is, how it can enhance school library services, what planning is involved, and the types of tools that can be used. The guide explains that social media for libraries is about building connections and learning communities using web based technologies. Seven steps to planning the library’s social media presence are clearly articulated. There are also links to a detailed planning template, a social media toolkit, examples of social media use in school libraries and further reading that would assist teacher librarians to learn about and plan a social media strategy.
Ellyssa Kroski explains that school libraries have different challenges to face with social media than other types of organisations. Social media policies provide clear guidelines for staff posting on behalf of the library and on their personal accounts and standards for acceptable use by library users. The article outlines what should be included in a social media policy and suggests looking at other organisation’s social media policies for best practice. The importance of revising the policy when technological changes occur is also stressed. Unfortunately some of the links to examples of policies are no longer available.
The social media policy of All Saints Anglican School is one of many of the school’s policies. This is a very detailed policy that outlines appropriate guidelines and procedures for the use of social media by the staff and students. This policy therefore would also encompass the library. The main aim of the policy is not to restrict staff and students from using social media but to protect them by making very clear what is considered appropriate and acceptable use. The following headings provide structure to the policy: purpose, scope, responsibilities, definitions, breach and conclusion.
This document from New South Wales Education & Training provides social media guidelines for the department. The value of social media is noted and employees are made aware of what is required for responsible use of social media for personal and professional use. While this is not a library policy, aspects could be adapted for library use. The guidelines are clearly summarised in large font on a single page and then followed up with more detail.