Protocols for parent communication?

My general theory about life is success is inherent to knowing your audience and being able to effectively communicate to them at their level.

Sadly, I think I was first taught the idea of “mirroring” my conversation partner as a schmoozing tactic back in my undergrad days where I was a ruthless telemarketer…

female-textingStill, the idea behind it is pretty much universally applicable and I think when it comes to our jobs as teachers, you’ve got to be able to communicate effectively on that level – whatever the context may be – when we talk to the parents of our students.

I considered these ideas as I came upon a piece: ‘6 Tech Tools That Boost Teacher-Parent Communication’ from the oh-so-aptly entitled body, Common Sense Education. Because yes, technology is the general preference for everyone it would seem now. Parents aren’t exclusive to that idea.

In fact, it would seem that there is quite a heavy parental presence utilising the social media world to speculate over the finer details of their child’s sex education. This was what one parent confronted me with, it seemed closely affiliated with the Frankston High parent who featured on both Q & A as well as an anti-same sex marriage ad, appalled at the prospect of her son being permitted to wear a dress to school…

Ed Tech discuss the preference that parents have been found to have in using digital technologies more within their child’s school – Today’s Parents Want More Digital Communication from Schools.

facebeak_chic_cartoonIt’s murky, the ethical waters of professional communication when the conventions that maintain decorum and respect are vulnerable, not to mention the idea of the prospective wall post:

Hey, FYI yr boy’s gonna be in detention a/s 2day….He was crazy AF rofl, anyways, c ya…

I don’t know, I haven’t used Facebook in nearly two years (do people still “poke” one another, for example???) but I did propose to my school that we would do better to maintain an active social media feed as a way of making those announcements that otherwise go on Compass.

That causes anxiety in a lot of my parents in my daily dealings…They, like their “digital native” child is supposed to instantly process their login details provided and login without any real assistance or discussion as to how/where/what they can see and communicate to.

I would love to know what others think on this, how they negotiate that tenuous ethical line, whilst understanding the context and communicating to their audience effectively.

Common Sense has since included a post “Social Media dos and don’ts for teachers”  which is also very important because the first thing your students do is look you up on Facebook. And that would bother me if I was still using it like in my crazy 20s going out and about. But even then I had an awareness of my public persona reflective of this profile activity…I digress, this one was about the parents!!

I can’t locate the actual posting now, of course!!

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