Banana bread is always safe

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(To young, new teachers especially. Readers, please share this post with new colleagues.)

I messaged a friend tonight warning her about her recent Facebook posts. If you are a recent graduate in your first teaching position, you may be relaxing your social media caution. Please don’t. Even the tenured can be fired for speaking negatively about their students. Don’t assume no one will be checking now for scenes of riotous partying or zombie dissection videos. If no one else is checking, your students will be. That sea of faces that walks into your room? They are curious about you. Some of them are tech savvy and, especially if you live in a smaller town, may know younger sisters and brothers of friends of yours.

Social media can ambush you. After a long day, vent to friends in the teacher’s lounge or at the local pub, but don’t vent over the internet. Don’t share too many details from the big party last Saturday night, either.

Eduhonesty: I know many teachers. My feed is filled with recipes and pleas to rescue puppies. If you come across great ideas to help in the classroom, those make fine shares, too.

But view Facebook and social media as part of your job application package. Even if you are doing an excellent job, you may find yourself on the market next year. I have been riffed three (four?) times as part of reductions in force. I was always recalled, but I was looking for work those years to hedge my bets.