Social media pros and cons for students
Social media can be a powerful tool for learning inside the classroom, but it can also get out of hand if students don't use it the right way. Kids seem to always be tweeting, texting, and constantly updating. Social media is everywhere, but Paducah Tilghman Principal Art Davis says the halls are one place it doesnt belong. "The negative side, for me, outweighs the positive side," he said.
Socia media policies are different at every school, so Davis said it's important for students to know the rules. "Some kids get it, and some kids do not until it's too late," he said. There are serious consequences for kids who use technology to cheat. "It's not honest. Don't look for a recommendation from me to a college if you're gonna cheat," Davis said.
Anti-bullying advocate Susan Guess said the situation is even more serious when students use it to be unkind. She said, "They don't realize the impact they can have on another human being. It can be life and death." Guess says a good way to stop cyber-bullying is to monitor your kid's social media use. "There are a number of ways that a parent can see before it gets to the position where that child is in danger, in over their head, and really fearful," she said.
That's a scenario Captain Matt Carter with The McCracken County Sheriff's Department says he's seen too many times. "Sometimes they may not look at look at it as being criminal at the time, but their actions can often times overstep boundaries," he said. Law enforcement steps in when bullying turns into harassment. Carter said, "The penalty on that could be jail time. There's different degrees depending on exactly what occurs."
Carter said students also tend to over-share on social media. "That just provides a recipe that could turn into a disaster for someone and their safety," he said. It's disaster that's 100 percent avoidable. That's the reason why Guess said every student should know the do's and don'ts of social media. She said, "If we can make the difference with one child... If we can save one life... It's worth it."
There are a number of apps available to help parents monitor what their kids are doing on social media.