Family Social Media Guidelines

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Introduction Social Media Defined Encourage Children to Post Wisely

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Consider Your Audience

Every Action has a Consequence Online

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Social Media Tips for Parents

Social Media Guidelines for Children

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Digital Citizenship Take Cyberbullying Seriously

Recognizing 7 Common Cyberbullying Tactics

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Adhere to the Guidelines Additional Web Resources

Internet Acceptable Use and Safety Policy

INTRODUCTION DeKalb County School District (DCSD) is committed to providing students with access to an education that prepares them to succeed in a global society utilizing 21st-century technology. Family members play a key role in ensuring students use social media responsibly. These Parent and Family Social Media Guidelines have been created to help you guide your children in using social media responsibly and effectively. The Parent and Family Social Media Guidelines provide information about how to responsibly use social media while in school and at home by:

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Recommending appropriate social media communication Sharing ideas about how to create a healthy digital image Outlining procedures for how to protect children while using social media

These guidelines should be reviewed in accordance with DCSD’s Internet Acceptable Use and Safety Policy, which can be found by visiting the Board of Education website at

Look for the light bulb icon for trivia questions throughout this booklet. Keep score to see who knows more about social media. Do parents know more, or do students know more? (Trivia Quest answers on page 20)


SOCIAL MEDIA DEFINED Social media is the collective of online communications channels dedicated to community-based input, interaction, content sharing, and collaboration. Social media is a global communications network that allows for the exchange of ideas, content, and information anywhere, anytime. Social media at DCSD is important because social media tools offer exceptional transparency, support effective communication by helping to expand reach, foster engagement, and increase access to credible information externally and internally.

Watching virtual parent town halls on Facebook Live

Using YouTube to work on a class project of Social Media uses included the following:

Visiting social media pages for school district news

Celebrating graduation by sharing pictures on Instagram with family


True or False: The TikTok app offers time management features.


ENCOURAGE CHILDREN TO POST WISELY Young people must consider how they want the world to view them. This includes aligning their individual goals with their online images, being accountable for their words, and understanding that families can be helpful partners.

Children must let their online image reflect who they are Did you know that no one under the age of 13 is permitted to join Facebook? Because anyone can lie about their year of birth, it’s important that your children have only age-appropriate social media accounts.

Children must be accountable for what they say Before your children can abide by the rules, they must also understand them. Read through the DCSD Board Policies and Student Social Media Guidelines as a family so that your children are clear on the expectations and safeguards. Also, consider creating a contract for your children to abide by, such as no computer or cell phone use after certain hours.

Families: social media partners who know best Families can use parenting control apps and filtering software to keep their children safe, which allows families to monitor social media sites, block chats, and filter content. Get to know your children’s habits.

Be their best selves

Parents and families can help control their children’s digital images by encouraging them to:

Know their audiences

Post positive content

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Which country was first to use the word “Selfie”? a. Canada b. United States c. France d. Australia

Ask Your Children • • • •

Do you conduct an internet search of yourself to see what employers or college reps could possibly see? Do you have any social media pages that you are not permitted to have? Do you understand the rules and regulations of your social media accounts? Who are your friends and/or followers on social media?


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Discuss the possible consequences of posting photos that you thought had been deleted.

CONSIDER YOUR AUDIENCE Encourage children to be their best at all times The digital world can give the impression of anonymity, but do not be deceived; it is the same as face-to-face communication. Sometimes people, particularly children, believe that they are not accountable for what they share online. But we are always responsible for what we say online as well as face-to-face.

Monitor the pictures your child posts online Many children post photos of themselves, assuming that they can delete a photo and it’s “lost.” Therefore, it’s important to make sure that the content of the photo is completely harmless and that no identifiable locales in the background are noticeable.

Think before you post Often it is too late to retract what has been read by others. Keep in mind that posting while emotional is not advisable. Parents and families should be good role models when posting on social media too. Remember, online posts can never be completely deleted whether you have regrets or not. Remind children that they should always ask themselves: “Is this a post I want to live with?”

Ask Your Children •

Do you use your real names online or nicknames?

Do you post photos of yourselves? If so, where/what were they of?

Is it okay to share your vacation trip on Facebook?


EVERY ACTION HAS A CONSEQUENCE ONLINE Online Protection It can be challenging for children to protect themselves online at all times. This is why it’s vital for parents to commit to being social media partners with their children. Here are some online protection tips:

Keep the computer in a central location. It’s much easier to keep tabs on any online activity when the computer is located in a high-traffic zone such as the living room or the kitchen. One of the ways children can protect themselves online is by keeping their passwords private. It is not a good idea to share passwords with friends, no matter how close they are. Sometimes children think if they share things like candy or gifts, it’s also okay to share passwords.

Reiterate that passwords should be kept private except with parents, who are social media partners.

Set ground rules for cell phone use. For example, set hours for phone usage or if you have teenagers of driving age, enforce the “no texting while driving rule.” Keep in mind that if your children see you online often, they’ll also want to be online.

Speak to your children about only accepting friend requests from people they know.

If there is a post they’re uncomfortable with, unfriend, tell a parent, or report the post if necessary.

Identify what is safe to share online, including where you live, social security numbers, or where you’re staying on vacation. Revealing too much information can compromise your child’s identity.

Urge your children to avoid fun contests, questionnaires, free giveaways, and contests. Warn children that even pop-up ads can be an internet trick to obtain personal information.

Be aware of your child’s online behavior. Consider friending or following your children on the internet. Some families keep a copy of their child’s online usernames and passwords.

Ask Your Children

Have you checked your social media privacy settings lately? Remind your children to check their privacy settings often.



Which of the following is a Microblogging platform? a. YouTube b. Twitter c. Android

Adjust privacy settings as needed Encourage your children to check their privacy settings and make sure that their social media settings are set to the strictest levels. There are different privacy setting defaults depending on the social media platform they use. Some platforms might change those settings over time without making it obvious. Keep in mind that privacy settings are automatically set by social media providers governing who can see your posts.

Cyber Safety DCSD Video Tips Cyber Safety Tips you should follow to protect your identity and secure your connections and data on the web. Click on the link or paste it on your browser to watch the videos on YouTube.

Creating Strong Passwords

Anti Virus Protection

Be Careful Who You Meet Online

Positive Digital Footprint

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Read the following statement and then discuss as a family. Studies found that over 71 percent of parents do not supervise their children’s internet use after the age of 14, yet a shocking 72 percent of all missing children cases that begin online involve children who are 15 or older.



Family Social Media Guidelines

Keep the computer or tablets in a common area of your home

Set a time limit for online activities

Become familiar with the sites your child visits

Know your child’s online “friends”

Know your child’s passwords

Keep your security software up-to-date


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Never give out identifying information

Never write or post anything you wouldn’t be comfortable with the whole world seeing

Treat others online as you would treat them in person

Never share your password

Never open an email or click on a link from someone you don’t know

Contact a trusted adult right away if an adult stranger contacts you online


Read the following statement and then discuss as a family.

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Grooming is when someone builds a relationship, trust, and emotional connection with a child or young person so that they can manipulate, exploit, and abuse them. Children and young people who are groomed can be sexually abused, exploited, or trafficked. Anybody can be a groomer, no matter their age, gender, or race.


DIGITAL CITIZENSHIP In the digital world, what you post online can define who you are. Being a good digital citizen means positively contributing to the digital space, respecting other people’s views even if you don’t agree, and reporting issues that disrupt a positive digital environment. Your digital footprint or reputation is left online when you post on blogs, upload videos and pictures, or even leave comments on websites. No matter what your online actions are, consider that what you share can leave a permanent record, even if you click delete. Therefore, be extra careful about what you share online and with whom you share content. The DCSD Digital Dreamers Program and 1:1 device implementation for grades 6-12 transform how students learn and teachers teach. Having a device to use for school is a privilege that carries responsibilities. The DCSD Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) outlines rules and guidelines for using DCSD devices and network resources. It outlines what you can and cannot do with school-issued technology. Learn more about Digital Dreamers at:


TAKE CYBERBULLYING SERIOUSLY Cyberbullying happens when kids bully each other through electronic technology. Cyberbullying includes sending, posting, or sharing negative, harmful, false, or mean content about someone else. There can be a fine line when it comes to cyberbullying. It can include sharing personal or private information about someone else, causing embarrassment or humiliation. Some cyberbullying crosses the line into unlawful or criminal behavior. Specific examples of cyberbullying include:

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Intimidating or threatening people Threats against the school or people’s property

Using another person’s log-in or password to send inappropriate messages and images

Creating fake profiles of other people

Creating websites to embarrass, threaten, or socially isolate other person

Circulating offensive photos or videos

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Texting offensive messages Creating rumors and posting false information about people

To get more information on cyberbullying and drawing the line between digital use and digital abuse, please visit:

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What is a Googol?

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a. Search Engine b. A large Number c. Virtual Pet d. France Dance

How to Prevent Cyberbullying: A Guide for Parents, Caregivers, and Youth

Click to download or scan code

Have a Plan

In the event your family experiences cyberbullying, it’s a good idea to have a plan in place. Never respond to offensive online behavior, and be sure to save any messages that could be used as evidence when you report the behavior. For more information on reporting cyberbullying, please visit:

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RECOGNIZING 7 COMMON CYBERBULLYING TACTICS It is important to understand how children are cyberbullied so it can be easily recognized, and action can be taken. Common cyberbullying tactics include: Posting comments or rumors about someone online that are mean, hurtful, or embarrassing. Threatening to hurt someone or telling them to kill themselves. Posting a mean or hurtful picture or video. Pretending to be someone else online in order to solicit or post personal or false information about someone else. Posting mean or hateful names, comments, or content about any race, religion, ethnicity, or other personal characteristics online. Creating a mean or hurtful webpage about someone. “Doxing,” an abbreviated form of the word documents, is a form of online harassment used to exact revenge and to threaten and destroy the privacy of individuals by making their personal information public, including addresses, social security, credit card, and phone numbers, links to social media accounts, and other private data.




ADHERE TO THE GUIDELINES Review the DCSD Board of Education Policy and Student Guidelines Student Social Media Guidelines are recommendations that can help students establish a healthy social media presence online. To review Student Social Media Guidelines, please visit here:



ADDITIONAL WEB RESOURCES “Facebook, Instagram, and Social.” Parent Concern. Web. Aug. 11, 2015. DeKalb County School District National Center for Missing and exploited Children:


True or false? “Trolling” is a fun activity kids do to celebrate good grades at school.


A N SW ERS True or false? TikTok app offers time management features. Answer: True Parents can decide whether their child can search for content, users, songs, or hashtags and set daily screen time (40 to 120 minutes a day). Source:

Which country was first to use the word “Selfie”? Answer: Australia The first-known appearance of selfie in written form occurred in 2002 on an Australian news website, but the word didn’t see much use until 2012. By November 2013, selfie was appearing frequently enough in print and electronic media that Oxford Dictionaries (publisher of the Oxford English Dictionary as well as other dictionaries) chose the word as its Word of the Year. Source:

Which of the following is a Microblogging platform? Answer: Twitter Twitter is an online micro blogging and social networking website that is used to provide information, commentary and descriptions of events, and highlight certain audio or video content.

What is a Googol? Answer: A large number The figure 1 followed by 100 zeros (10100), named by Milton Sirotta, the nephew of the American mathematician Edward Kasner, who was working with large numbers. Google, on the other hand, is the name of a search engine. Source:

True or false? “Trolling” is a fun activity kids do to celebrate good grades at school. Answer: False Trolling is Cyberbullying and is posting something anonymously just to get people angry and to respond. Source:


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