Social Media Policy Document For Schools To Promote Safe Use of Social Media by Staff

A total of 43 teachers were referred to the General Teaching Council for England in 2011 for unprofessional conduct related to the use of social media sites, with 14 teachers suspended and 18 placed on probation. In addition, the NUT have recently advised all schools that they should have policies in place making it clear what teachers should and should not do in the virtual space.

Schools are becoming increasingly aware of the need to regulate social media use by teaching staff but often struggle to create a single, detailed policy document which is updated and organic, capable of responding to new trends and sites as they happen. In response to this need, we have liaised with internet and teaching experts to create a trusted, cohesive, accessible and robust school-wide policy that can be practically applied and will, provide clear distinctions between public and private use and most importantly, cover the safe and appropriate use of social media by members of staff.”

The policy document is available to download online from It can be purchased as a stand alone document and then distributed in electronic or hard copy format within a matter of minutes to all members of staff. It promises to help educational establishments to ensure that the use of social media by staff;

  • Does not bring the school into disrepute
  • Does not bring the teacher into disrepute
  • Does not expose the school to legal liability
  • Reflects ‘safer internet’ practices
  • Minimises risks associated with the personal use of social media by professionals and
  • Reflects the school’s standard of behaviour and staff code of conduct

The safe use code has been developed in line with good teaching in PSCHE, ICT and other subjects with regard to “safer use of the internet”. It was written by teacher Tom Tolkien, a Senior Manager with extensive experience of whole school assessment, internet and e-safety as well as initiative and policy development.

The document provides practical step-by-step guides to applying recommended privacy settings on popular social networking sites, with explanations on how to determine if posts, comments, images, links and videos shared on a profile by a teacher are appropriate and transparent.

The policy includes information for teaching staff about maintaining privacy and keeping personal information such as phone numbers and addresses private while using their own or school equipment. Detailed guidelines regarding communication with parents and pupils cover sites like Facebook and Twitter, acceptable content for social network profiles and how to respond to initiated contact from pupils. The policy concludes with guidance on recognising exceptions and reporting abuse or cyber bullying.

The policy document for acceptable use of social media by staff in educational establishments is priced at £49.99, but you can save 5% by quoting HH12SMP when you order from


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The Nature of Matter

An elephant and a racing car don’t have much in common – except for the remarkable fact that they’re made of similar fundamental building blocks.

The Nature of Matter” programme from the “Physics In Action Series” of DVD resources takes a simulated subatomic look at a glass of water to better understand the nature of matter, a minuscule world of molecules, atoms, and elementary particles. The behaviour of matter under the effects of gravity, electromagnetism, and the strong and weak nuclear forces; the process of scientific experimentation; specifics of atomic structure; the organisation of matter via the periodic table; ionic, covalent, and hydrogen bonding; the process of radioactive decay; and the death of fusion-fuelled stars are scrutinised as well.

The main topics are covered in 8 distinct video chapters:

Chapter 1: Inner Space The programme begins with an outline of the basic building blocks of nature — molecules, atoms, protons, neutrons, electrons, and quarks — and the fundamental forces of gravity, electromagnetism, the weak nuclear force, and the strong nuclear force.

Chapter 2: The Rise of the Atom After a brief review of elements, compounds, chemical reactions, and the scientific method, viewers get a history of the concept of the atom, beginning with ancient Indian and Greek ideas, continuing through the Bohr model, and ending with today’s quantum model.

Chapter 3: Organising Atoms Elements, the atomic number, the neutron number, the atomic mass number, isotopes, and ions are reviewed in this section.

Chapter 4: The Periodic Table of Elements This section explains why the periodic table is set up as it is, and how it helps scientists both orga nise elements, and predict how elements will react when combined with each other. Viewers learn about quantum numbers, energy shells and subshells, and the exclusion principle.

Chapter 5: Chemical Bonds Ionic, covalent, and hydrogen bonds are the focus here. The role of valence shells, polarization, and electronegativity is highlighted.

Chapter 6: Reactivity This section details the dynamics of alpha, beta, and gamma radioactivity. Also included is a discussion of half-life and carbon-14 dating.

Chapter 7: Nuclear Energy Along with an explanation of the difference between fission and fusion, viewers learn how the sun, bombs, and nuclear power plants generate so much energy.

Chapter 8: Elementary Particle Physics The final section introduces elementary particles such as quarks, leptons, and bosons, and the role that strong and weak nuclear forces play in their study. The programme ends by challenging students to contemplate ‘theories in progress,’ such as anti-matter, and researchers’ hopes for the Large Hadron Collider.

Learning Objectives – after viewing the program, students will be able to:

  • Understand the difference between atoms, protons, neutrons, electrons, quarks, elements, molecules, and compounds
  • Define the fundamental forces of gravity, electromagnetism, the weak nuclear force, and the strong nuclear force
  • Understand that scientists form a hypothesis and then conduct experiments to come up with a theory or model
  • Define the following terms: atomic number, neutron number, atomic mass number, isotope, ion, fission, and fusion
  • Understand the arrangement of the periodic table of elements
  • Understand the four quantum numbers and the exclusion principle
  • Understand ionic, covalent, and hydrogen bonds
  • Understand alpha, beta, and gamma radioactivity
  • Understand the basics of elementary particles

32-minute chaptered DVD with viewable/printable instructor’s guide available online.

A Films for the Humanities & Sciences Production ©2010

Available on approval from Viewtech Educational Media – quote promotional discount code: HHM110 at the checkout for a 10% discount!

If you’d like any further information or assistance please contact:

Viewtech Educational Media
7-8 Falcons Gate
Dean Road
BS37 5NH

tel: 01454 858055
fax: 01454 858056

Viewtech Educational Media is the trading name of Viewtech Audio Visual Media Limited, a company registered in England and Wales under number 4205240. A member of the British Educational Suppliers Association. E.&O.E.