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AIBU to feel uncomfortable that school's deputy head uses identifiable children's work in his education blog?

(22 Posts)
nameuschangeus Mon 29-Jun-15 22:03:49

Really need some thoughts on this. Relatively new (and very good) deputy head at my dc's school writes a blog on education, often with a focus on teaching literacy. I've had a look at it tonight and there are photos of children's work on there with the children's names on it (children named in the teacher's comments). This made me feel uncomfortable but I can't quite put my finger on why. Just seemed a bit unethical and intrusive to show work that a child thinks is for the teacher to the world at large. Children are lower ks2 age. Am I over reacting?

CalleighDoodle Mon 29-Jun-15 22:09:25

No. Thats not on. In my masters dissertation, which was a private docuemnt, i had to change names due to privacy issues. When i take photos of children's work there are never names.

Imustgodowntotheseaagain Mon 29-Jun-15 22:12:02

Could one of the teaching unions advise you? Then you would know where you stood before raising it with the head.

steppedonlego Mon 29-Jun-15 22:16:54

He sounds very keen if he's doing a blog in his spare time regarding his job, and I'd be hesitant to want to dampen his enthusiasm.

That said it is a breech of confidence to use children's names. Can you raise it with him informally?

noblegiraffe Mon 29-Jun-15 22:22:56

Names should be blurred out. Who wants their kid's work to be on the Internet as an example of a typical mistake, poor spelling or whatever?

Wideopenspace Mon 29-Jun-15 22:23:52

Are the names just things like 'Great work bob'?

Wideopenspace Mon 29-Jun-15 22:24:22

(sorry, that was shit formative feedback) grin

FuzzyWizard Mon 29-Jun-15 22:25:49

Is your DC's work there? Are you sure he doesn't have permission?

Are the examples positive? I think that makes a huge difference... Showing off great work done by students doesn't seem all that different to putting it up on the wall in the school reception area.

If it's being used in a negative way or to show issues it should be anonymised. actually I probably wouldn't share that sort of thing at all without permission from the student (or parent in primary) and then only to show and celebrate progress made since.

MayPolist Mon 29-Jun-15 22:29:30

If school is identified then name should be blurred out, otherwise it is unidentifiable.

ValancyJane Mon 29-Jun-15 22:31:09

Is it first names only? If so I think it's fine. Full name however is not appropriate. He sounds v passionate about education and you said yourself that he's good at his job - if he's discussing the work in a positive way I don't think it's inappropriate. I imagine some children might be quite chuffed to find their good work shared with the world!!

KayAdams Mon 29-Jun-15 22:43:13

He's contravening the child protection policy. I am an educational marketer and have had child protection drummed into me. His argument maybe that he isn't using photos. That isn't good enough. Ask to see the school's child protection policy (it's a legal requirement for schools to have one, and copies to ne available for parents on demand) and raise your concerns with the school's child protection officer. All these courses emphasised that it's worse to feel uncomfortable about something and do nothing, rather than "interfering".

Icimoi Mon 29-Jun-15 23:04:42

Do you know whether they are the children's real names?

ChuffinAda Mon 29-Jun-15 23:40:38

Surely it's a data protection infringement?

nameuschangeus Tue 30-Jun-15 05:58:13

The work is photographed in its entirety, including comments which say things like 'what wonderful work Thalia' - comments are nearly always positive so that's one thing. Obviously I'm not certain if permission has been gained from children or parents, if that's the case then that's their choice and is fine. Since writing that first message I've seen that other teachers in the school are also adding children's work to Twitter too. Just seems odd that teachers are doing this. I need to take it to school I think.

Mistigri Tue 30-Jun-15 06:31:10

I think it's a breach of privacy given that he uses the children's real names and he is presumabu easily identifiable as a head teacher of a particular school. So by extension this work could easily be identified as belonging to a particular child. I hope he has the sense to only display work with positive comments on!

I think that without explicit consent of the parents this is very dodgy ground and suggests that the person in question has astonishingly poor judgement for someone in such a position.

ChampagneBabyCakes Tue 30-Jun-15 06:31:58

A really good and passionate teacher is making a mistake. Please speak to him- 'please blot out the names on the kids work' or asking 'just wondering if you have permission from the kids parents as their names are on their work'

They are praising children, and for all you know, they have permission. Maybe similar to the permission slip signed at the start of term for the class teacher to take pics of kids.

Or you could take the education marketers advice and report them to child protection before finding out the facts..... Then we can add another good teacher to the list of demotivated people leaving the profession. Makes me so sad.

GinandJag Tue 30-Jun-15 06:40:08

At my DC's schools we have always signed a declaration saying that we are happy for their photos, names, and samples of work can be used in school marketing and publicity, including on the Internet.

I can't see how a photograph of a piece of work can be child protection unless the child is revealing something.

nameuschangeus Tue 30-Jun-15 07:04:06

I'm not suggesting that it's a child protection matter at all. It just made me uncomfortable as the child could be identified. I think it's great that he is passionate enough to want to bother sharing his thoughts with fellow professionals but I also know that I wouldn't be happy for my own child's work to be used so publicly. However I'm one of the only people I know who doesn't put my dc's pictures on-line, hence the question, in case it's me who is out of line.

FirstOfficerDouglasRichardson Tue 30-Jun-15 07:09:08

Is it just first names? Is the school identified anywhere. If yes and no to the above question then I can't really see the issue. If no and yes then it might be worth asking the deputy head directly rather than go to the head or the governors.

FirstOfficerDouglasRichardson Tue 30-Jun-15 07:11:10

Sorry to clarify. A child cannot be identified from "excellent work Megan". It's just a name.

Speak to the deputy, suggest that he/she doesn't photograph the comments.

mummytime Tue 30-Jun-15 07:24:59

I would mention to him that I felt uncomfortable.

When I was training to be a teacher, we were told clearly we had to hide pupil's identities in all our submitted work, I tended to use their first initial. This was work that would only be seen by out tutor and the awarding institution, and it did include examples of children's work, not just our analysis or them and their work.

soapboxqueen Tue 30-Jun-15 07:50:59

I would check that you haven't already signed something to the effect that you don't mind. Possibly in with the photograph permissions.

It isn't identifiable information. No surnames or photos are included. Plenty of schools do this and isn't really that much different to putting the work on the wall. If you feel uncomfortable about it, ask for your child to be excluded from the blog.

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