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Facebook for Schools - 10 Steps for Top Marks

Web Bureau

11 September 2012 by Web Bureau

Facebook is an excellent opportunity for schools to connect with families and share information. If a school is consistent in keeping the information updated and accurate, people will come to rely on the Facebook Page as a resource to find out (about) what’s going on at the school.

Here are a few guidelines to get you started.............

1. Your Cover Photo

Your Facebook cover photo is the first thing that is going to capture your audience. 

Here are some tips for your picture:

• Show off your campus
 Include your students
 Show off landmarks
 Promote key Alumni

Make sure the photo is high quality and sized correctly (851px X 315px).

 2. Make your ‘About’ page interesting

One of the first things a new visitor will do on your Facebook page is check out your “about” information.

Make sure you take full advantage of this area. Follow these tips to fill out your “about” section in a way that makes it useful to those who read it…

Add your mission statement
Make sure to include all your contact info
Enter your address w/ map
Include links to your website and other social networks
Include calls-to-action

3. Fill in Your History and Milestones 

Think of at least five milestones that help tell your story and add pictures to illustrate them. Here are a few quick ideas to help you start…

Date when school was founded

Significant accomplishments, awards, recognitions, etc
Launch of new programs, colleges/schools, community work, etc
Significant sporting events
New deans, principals, presidents, etc…
Significant community outreach/services/programs

4. Share Photos

Photos are an excellent way to showcase school culture. A school may choose to use photos to highlight a variety of aspects of the school, including:

Celebrations of student work

Field trips
Experiential learning activities
Assemblies or school-wide celebrations
Recognition of individual students for excellence

5. Share Videos

Likewise, videos can be used to showcase different things, including:

A variety of learning, including different subjects and age groups
Assemblies or school-wide events
Community meetings
High calibre teaching and student engagement
Students, teachers, and members of the community discussing what makes the school special
Sporting events
Plays, concerts and other performances

6. Share Events

A Facebook Page is an excellent opportunity for a school to post upcoming events using the Facebook Events app. This app not only allows people to RSVP, but can also lead to increased attendance at functions.

7. Make Announcements

Facebook is a great space for schools to make announcements to parents and students. Consistency is the key here as followers will develop an expectation that they can count on the page when they want information about the school. 

8. Create Discussions

A school can create a discussion about a specific topic and allow members of the community to share their thoughts within the thread. Admins will be able to moderate the thread and remove anything inappropriate.

9. Get the Most out of Your Posts

The most important goal your Facebook page should have is to create engagement. You need to build relationships with your community and encourage them to connect with you.

You can create engagement by:

Pinning posts allows you to keep your important messages at the top of your Facebook page for seven days.
Highlighting posts gives you the opportunity to make certain things stand out on your page.
Promoting posts enables you to reach a larger audience.

10. Engage Your Fans

Facebook’s Timeline for businesses makes it such that fan-initiated engagement and content takes a back seat to brand-initiated engagement and content. This means Facebook no longer puts fan posts directly into your wall.

This means you need to actively monitor what your fans are doing on your page and, when appropriate, highlight their content.

Here’s how to highlight fan content… Go to the Admin bar at top of your fan page (you’ve got to be logged in as an admin). Then hit the Edit page button > Use Activity Log. Dig through the activity log to find posts from your fans that you want to highlight. Once you find something you can hit the little circle located to the right of the activity, click on it, and select “Highlight on Page”.

You’ve just made one fan very happy!

 Please Note:

Before sharing any information about any student, school leaders must ensure they’ve obtained consent from the child’s guardian. Additionally, avoid sharing last names of students as this can potentially jeopardize their safety (and may be illegal).

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