Like many schools across the country, Matt Renwick’s school uses printed newsletters to share student learning with families on a weekly basis.
Parents have responded positively to these communications for years, but are we reaching everyone? Probably not. Social media has already proved to be a powerful tool for communication and collaboration, and there is evidence to support its use in the K-12 environment.
Meg Carnes and Kitty Porterfield make a strong case for connecting online with families in their book Why Social Media Matters: School Communication in the Digital Age. They cite data from the Pew Research Center that 75 percent of adults ages 29 and younger use social media. The most recent data from Pew found that 83 percent of adults 18–29 use social media.
The trend is obvious: The overwhelming majority of young parents will be social media users within a few years.
That’s why [he] believes print communications must be augmented with a digital presence.
Here are three examples of how schools can use Web 2.0 to connect with more families. (Note: All three of these tools can be linked or embedded into your classroom web page within your district.)