ERASE Student Advisory’s Social Media Guidelines

What are Social Media Guidelines?


While social media can be a powerful educational tool, it can also be easily misused.

The ERASE Student Advisory developed Social Media Guidelines to provide direction for students, parents and educators on how to use social media ethically and responsibly. The guidelines apply to all forms of social media, including regular internet browsing and the use of apps on a cellphone or other device.

Because students use social media at home as well as during school hours, they should follow the guidelines at all times—not just during the school day.

Highlights from the Guidelines

Read the ERASE Student Advisory’s Social Media Guidelines (PDF)

What is social media?

"Social media" is anything that allows people to communicate or share information online or electronically, and includes social networks (like Facebook, Twitter, or Tumblr), messaging services (like email or texting), or other online communities (like YouTube).

Information for Students

  • Use social media responsibly and make sure what you do online reflects who you are in real life—if you wouldn’t say it, don’t post it.
  • Remember that what you share through social media may be permanently available to anyone who looks for it, even if you delete it.
  • Talk to your friends in person whenever you can—it’s easy to misunderstand someone’s message online or over texts.
  • Don’t use social media, cellphones, or other devices during class without a teacher’s permission.

If you don’t want your friends, peers, family members, teachers, or future bosses to see something, DON’T POST IT!

  • Only accept friend requests from people you know in real life.
  • Make sure to adjust your privacy settings so you know exactly who will see what you share.
  • Avoid posting personal information like your exact birthday, phone number, address, or social insurance number.
  • Respect other people’s privacy—never use your cellphone or other device to take a picture or recording of someone else without their permission.
  • Never post images or recordings of others online (real or altered) without their permission.

To avoid having your information stolen or hacked, change your passwords regularly and only share them with people you trust.

  • Know the terms and conditions of the apps and social media platforms that you use. If you ignore age limits and copyright laws, you could face real legal consequences.
  • Don’t impersonate others. Creating fake profiles of others or hacking their social media accounts is fraud – a criminal offence.
  • If you see or hear about something illegal or against school rules, do your best to tell an adult you trust.

Make an anonymous report using the ERASE reporting tool

Did you know?

  • Any photo, video, or image showing someone under eighteen engaged in a sexual activity (such as posing naked) is legally considered child pornography, even if the person in the image is consenting. If you capture or share a sexually explicit image of someone under eighteen – even yourself – you could be charged with creating or distributing child pornography.
  • Harassing others by following (or “stalking”) them online, sending them unwanted messages, telling them to commit suicide, or making them feel unsafe in any way is against the law.

Parents

  • Talk to your kids about how they use the internet and social media. Be supportive, not judgemental, and let them know that they can come to you with any problems they have online.
  • Agree on clear guidelines and rules for how you expect your child to use their cellphone, computer, or other device. You can even write your guidelines down and have you and your child sign and date the "contract" to encourage accountability.
  • Encourage your child tell you about any inappropriate behaviour they see or hear about through social media.

Stay informed—social media platforms and trends change every day.

Teachers

  • Tell your students exactly how you plan to use social media as a teaching tool and how you expect them to use social media in the classroom.
  • Ask your students to sign and return your school’s media consent forms.
  • Avoid interacting with students over social media unless it’s for related to school work. Keep your personal and professional profiles separate, and don’t add your students as friends on social media websites (unless they ’ve graduated).
  • As a school district employee, your behaviour on social media sets an example for your students, and the guidelines that apply to them also apply to you.

Who is the ERASE Student Advisory?

The ERASE Student Advisory is a group of 20 students from all over BC, representing public, independent and First Nations schools. They were selected to advise the Ministry of Education on bullying and student safety issues and develop social media guidelines.

Resources

If you are having thoughts of suicide or of hurting yourself or others, please reach out immediately for help. Call 9-1-1 (or your local police or authority, if you do not have 9-1-1) or go to your nearest hospital emergency room.

If you are being bullied, feeling alone or just need to talk to someone who will listen, please reach out to a trained volunteer or professional:



Resources for Parents

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Resources for Youth

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Thank you for stopping by to check out the ERASE Bullying online reporting tool. This tool is accessible through computers and smart phones, and will allow students, parents or other witnesses to report bullying or other threatening behaviour, anytime and anywhere.

The online reporting tool has just been developed and is in the final stages of testing.

If you need help, please reach out to someone you trust, like a parent, friend or teacher. Or, you can reach out to someone who doesn’t know you for support. There is a list of youth-oriented support lines and websites on this site just for you.

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