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Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District

SOCIAL MEDIA GUIDELINES & BEST PRACTICES FOR STUDENTS

Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and other social media platforms are hugely popular and most high school students are active on some or all of them. MVLA encourages students to exercise good judgment and common sense when posting on social media. 
 
Consider this: online activity may have an effect at school. In instances of cyberbullying or harassment, personal social media use, including off-hours use, may result in the school getting involved, including disciplinary action. 
 
MVLA encourages students to utilize social media in a positive way. Here are some guidelines for what’s not allowed, as well as some common sense advice on safe, responsible social media use. 
 
The “Don’t Do” List

The “Don’t Do” List

  • Threats: Threatening a person or group of people in any situation is very serious. Even posting or forwarding an anonymous, empty threat will raise red flags and authorities - both school and law enforcement - will investigate. If you see a threatening post, please get a screenshot and talk with a school administrator or teacher so we can act promptly for everyone’s well being. 
  • Cyberbullying: Cyberbullying takes many forms and all of them can harm others. This includes sending offensive text messages or emails, posting rumors or slurs, circulating embarrassing photos of a classmate online, and more. What may be intended as a harmless joke to one can be hurtful to others. 
  • Hate speech: Do not post or forward ethnic slurs, defamatory comments, personal insults, or obscene content.
 
If you see or hear about online threats or bullying, please contact a teacher or an administrator so we can help.
 
Common Sense Advice

Common Sense Advice

  • Assume that everything you put on a social networking site is permanent. Even if you can delete your account, anyone on the internet can easily print photos/text or save images/videos to a computer. Make sure that each post is something you want to live with.  
  • Be respectful of others, even if you don’t agree with them. Don't spread rumors, tell secrets or publish confidential information.
  • Be yourself, but do so respectfully. This includes not only the obvious (no ethnic slurs, offensive comments, defamatory comments, personal insults, obscenity, etc.) but also proper consideration of privacy and topics that may be considered objectionable or inflammatory.
  • Know who is in your social network. Be cautious about accepting any random “friends.” 
  • Maintain the highest privacy settings, but don’t always assume they’ll work for you. If you don’t want someone to be able to see something, don’t post it at all. There’s no such thing as true anonymity.
  • Avoid posting offensive jokes, photos or material, negative messages and comments, and questionable or compromising photos of yourself OR others.
 
If you ever have concerns about posts or behaviors you see online, know that you can go to any school administrator or teacher for help.