The Saratoga Sun -

By Joe Elder 

CCSD#2 considers social media policy

 


The Board of Trustees for Carbon County School District No. 2 wants to update its policy governing employee use of social media and considered four policies ranging from explicit and specific to broad and general at its meeting Monday.

Cell phones and social media are pervasive in society today. Staff and coaches often rely on the use of texting to organize students and communicate the logistics of travel to and from events.

Board member Kay Lynn Palm said the overwhelming message she got was that staff needed to be able to text students individually in order to handle their teams or groups.

That scenario works if every student has a cell phone, but not every student has one.

“We lived without them forever,” board member Mike McGraw said. “I think we can do it now even if it’s uncomfortable in certain scenarios.”

Board member Janice Peterson said some forms of electronic communication like Facebook and email are easy to trace, but texting could prove to be a liability.

“Cell phones, in my opinion, are much more nebulous,” Peterson said. “You can get rid of that stuff and that is disconcerting to me.”

Board Attorney Bill MacPherson said if the board adopted a less specific policy it would be very difficult to prove unethical behavior, but on the other hand, if the policy was restrictive then it would end up handicapping all the good teachers.

Superintendent Bob Gates and MacPherson will blend elements from each of the four policies for the board’s consideration next month.

Gates asked the board if it wanted him to move forward on hiring a district mechanic even if it meant no money would be saved.

Gates said hiring a full-time district mechanic to fix the district’s school busses would be comparable to contracting with businesses, which is what the district does now.

“It’s not that anything is not getting fixed right now, but it takes a little more time and it would be nice to get (the busses back a little sooner),” Gates said.

If the district hired a full-time mechanic, it would have to lease or buy a building large enough for the busses and purchase insurance.

“The advantage of a specific person is they could take ownership of the work if a bus breaks down on a ranch somewhere - then we’ve got a guy that can go get it,” board member Joe Gaspari said.

The bus fleet would be the district mechanic’s sole responsibility, whereas a business’ priority many not be the busses.

Board member Tonya Bartholomew said it was important to consider the future when there may not always be a nearby business with the capacity to fix busses.

Gates said he would have a proposal ready for the board by February or March.

The next CCSD#2 meeting will be Feb. 20 at 4 p.m. at the Central Office in Saratoga.

 

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