I’m pleasantly surprised that I received a comment already and more importantly a great question was posed – is it professional or unprofessional for a teacher to have a Facebook account?
Let me give you the short answer. Yes.
In my opinion, having a Facebook account is no different than having a personal web page. Having it is neither professional or unprofessional. What you do with a Facebook account can have consequences to your professional life.
Personally, I like Facebook but have not obsessed over it. I treat it like any other personal relationship I might have. If someone asks me to be friends, my first litmus test is would I go out of my way to have a drink or dinner with that person? If not, I ignore the request. Tamar Weinberg, a social media expert, wrote an etiquette article that I think should be required reading even if you don’t agree with him.
Do teachers and Facebook accounts mix? Sure. Remember this – if you wouldn’t do or say something around your peers, boss or mother then you shouldn’t say or talk about it on Facebook.
Teachers who do use Facebook can be better authorities on the subject when helping students understand the consequences of Facebook usage. Illustrate a now famous story of a bank intern getting fired or more recently a teen suing former classmates for defamation.
Facebook can be a great tool to reconnect with friends and family. It can also be public proof that you might be a goofball and can’t be trusted with serious job responsibilities.