Schools urged to craft social media policies

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BACOLOD CITY: Schools should craft their own social media policies to properly guide their respective stakeholders when problems occur, speakers told 700 participants here of Web Impact Redefining Education Policy (wirEd 2).

Joseph Noel Estrada, managing partner of Estrada and Aquino Law Firm (EA Law) said there was a way “to educate our schools, administrators and teachers on how to develop policies in addressing issues on cyberspace and social media.”

“This is still a gray area in education policy. There is a lot of inter-action going on in social media and cyberspace that affects the way we deliver education now. We need to impart to them the necessary knowledge and give them security from legal risks,” Estrada pointed out.

Yesterday’s event is the second presented by The Manila Times, JTP Learning Solutions Inc., EA Law and the Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines-Negros Island; the first one was held in May.


Rhodora Angela Ferrer, executive director of the Private Education Assistance Committee (PEAC) said she was concerned about how the public school sector can deal with issues on social media.

“Private schools can be very innovative and progressive on how they do things. It may not be very even between the public and private schools sector. Right now with the prevalence of social media everyone will have to have awareness about how it can be used in the classroom. There has to be policies written and implemented by the school because of data privacy, cyber bullying and other consequences of social media as it impacts the classroom,” Ferrer said.

She added there should be “clarity by the school administrators on how it will be implemented and very clear context why they are doing what they doing. They should be equipped to deal with social media dilemmas,” she said.

For Jose Mari Policarpio, Chief EdTech Consultant of JTP Learning Solutions, Inc., said “all schools, whether public or private, should have effective social media guidelines in place.”

“In this world of social media where everyone has a cellphone, it’s a new situation. It is advisable for schools to craft and implement a social media policy for their students, teachers and non-teaching personnel. All stakeholders of the school should be part of the social media guidelines. It is a reality we cannot avoid anymore,” he said.

Dante Francis Ang 2nd, president and chief executive officer of The Manila Times, discussed fake news.

“Fake stories resonate across the social media community rendering the credibility and integrity of news stories questionable. Some of websites may rely on outrage by using bias, distorted headlines and decontextualized or dubious information in order to generate likes, shares, profits, and even to cast controversy,” Ang said.

He added that “fake news teaches readers and users to doubt media, this ultimately affects how people consume media and share information.”

However, Ang believes that “social media will not replace traditional media.”

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