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Back to Index | Relevant Policy - 7.67 Staff Use of Digital Communications
7.67.P.1 Staff Use of Digital Communications
Expectations for Digital Communications

These procedures and related policy shall be communicated to all employees and contracted personnel of the District annually and to newly hired employees as part of the hiring process.
The Superintendent shall determine which communications are approved for use by employees to communicate with parents and students. Employees shall be informed about District-approved communications annually and to newly hired employees shall be informed as part of the hiring process.

District employees are expected to adhere to the following expectations when communicating digitally.

Does the communication pass the Transparent, Accessible, and Professional (TAP) test?
  • Transparent:  All digital communication from District staff must be transparent to maintain openness, visibility and accountability regarding all communications . 
  • Accessible:  All digital communication to and from District staff are a public record.
  • Professional: All digital communication from District staff should be written professionally. This includes word choices, tone, grammar, and subject matter that model social and ethical standards and preserve the integrity of staff. Choice of words should be courteous, thoughtful, and mirror professional communication standards.

Digital Communication Guidelines

Although staff members enjoy free speech rights, certain types of communication, typically by virtue of their subject-matter connection to campus, may relate enough to school to have ramifications for the author or subject at the District site.

When using District technology, digital communication is governed by the District Electronic Information Systems User Agreement (EIS). Students and staff should not expect privacy in the contents of their personal files on the District’s Internet system or other District technology, including email. The use of District technology is a privilege, not a right.

Use of personal technology/devices may violate the District’s acceptable use policy if the District reasonably believes the conduct or speech will cause actual, material disruption of school activities or a staff member’s ability to perform his or her job duties.

Off-campus internet usage is largely unrelated to school. However, courts have held that the off-campus online communications may be connected enough to campus to result in either student or staff-member discipline.

Employees may be disciplined for online conduct and/or speech which the District reasonably believes will cause actual, material disruption to school activities.

Staff Technology Use
  • Limit On-Duty Use – Staff members must limit their personal technology use during duty hours whether or not the staff member is at school. 
  • Student Photographs and FERPA – Staff may not send, share, or post pictures of students that have opted-out of media/photos in the student handbook. Sharing material that personally identifies District students in digital or any other form of personal technology is a violation of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).  Staff members may not use images of students, e-mails, or other personally-identifiable student information for any personal purpose (i.e. crowdfunding campaigns).
  • Responsible Online Identity Monitoring – Employees are responsible for monitoring their ‘online identity,’ to prevent their online profiles from being fraudulently compromised or to track information posted about them online. There is often unwanted information that employees can contact the site administrator about and request its removal.
  • Confidential Information - Employees must never disclose, in either public or private format, confidential information possessed by the employee by virtue of his or her District employment.