In my workshop last week I had referred to the AHS blogging policy. It
is an excellent example. One feature of it that I really liked was the section
on “Successful bloggers”. This approach is so much more uplifting than a list
of “do not’s.” Approaching blogging from the angle of what bloggers should
aspire to achieve. It doesn’t get better than that. An example of what
appropriate blogging for schools looks like is provided. This tangible example
really helps. It is actual work taken from an AHS classroom blog, with typos
corrected. This policy is a model for us to aspire to achieve. You may want to
adapt parts to fit your school’s needs and reshape it to meet your objectives. 

Through some conversations with Karl Fisch I learned how they developed the policy. Karl intitially developed the blogging policy (researching heavily from sources around the web). He is the Director of Technology and did the initial legwork. Then he asked his teachers who were going through staff development to add their suggestions at this pbwiki. Then they posted it and shared it with the students in their classes who were blogging and asked for their feedback. Karl told me that they only made minor changes based on that feedback. However, they envision this as a “living” document – anticipating that they will need to make changes as they learn more and as the technology changes. Karl was attempting to setup some guidelines that would help, without getting too rigid or leaving themselves open to problems if they didn’t have something out there. Karl also wanted to stay away from anything too formal (like school board policy or anything) because he feared that could lead to a shutdown of blogging altogether should they have a problem. I had a previous post, Teachable Moments and Building Models about a problem that they had which they handled so well through conversations with staff and students These conversations took place on blogs and on a personal level. Then the other aspect of this blogging policy is the inclusion of students in the process. That is top-notch! Thanks Karl for sharing and pass on the thanks to your students and teachers.