Last week’s debate was on whether or not openness and sharing in schools is unfair to our kids. In agreement with the topic was Ashley. The points that she made during her propositional statement were as follows:
- Sharing doesn’t always include student consent.
- Sharing enables teachers to create permanent digital footprints for students.
- Sharing creates situations that can cause embarrassment and cyber bullying.
- Sharing with privacy settings do not ensure privacy.
Disagreeing with the topic was Dryden. The points that he made during his oppositional statement were as follows:
- Sharing is part of the foundation of teaching.
- Sharing brings openness to the classroom.
- Sharing documents learning in the classroom.
- Sharing offers the three keys to success — communication, trust, and adaptation.
Both the proposition and the opposition made convincing arguments. Prior to the debate I leant towards the opposition, but after hearing Dryden’s opinions on the matter, I was put on the fence. I think that when it comes to sharing students work, a lot more discussions need to occur in education circles. With the constant advancements in technology, more teachers need to better understand the pros and cons to their students having digital identities and be aware of their impact on those identities. This article, provided by Ashley, describes quite well the cautions teachers must have regarding their students’ digital identities, and offers some great tips for how to go about safely sharing students’ work. Some of these tips include:
- Seeking out your school or district’s guidelines for sharing.
- Ensure that you are using any forms provided by your school or district.
- Always respect the wishes of students and their caregivers.
If teachers were to use the above tips when considering sharing students’ work, then they would be able to access the benefits that Dryden described in his argument. This article provided by Dryden describes these benefits more fully. I especially like this article because it is based off of real life situations and demonstrates the success that occurred when a school began sharing its students’ work. The article describes this form of documentation as:
…a narrative, a way of telling learners’ stories, and a way of sharing this exciting journey with the school community and families.
Of course, as great as this may sound, we must remember that we are not the gatekeepers to our students’ digital identities. As I mentioned before, more discussion and research is needed before we decide exactly who is in control of the sharing, and what the limits for sharing are, however, I think that the tips listed in the article provided by Ashley are a great starting point.
What do you think? Let me know your opinion on this topic by commenting below!