From the “Circling the Wagons Department” it seems the New York City Department of Education has laid down the law about employees referencing their blogs in their e-mail signatures. For some reason, letting others know that your are a blogger is highly problematic, and the city is providing disclaimer language for anyone in the department who blogs and who comments on other’s blogs. (Hadn’t heard that one before.) As Lisa Nielsen, the manager of professional development for the Department of Instructional Technology writes on her blog, it’s not a direction that serves the DOE.
I find this particularly upsetting because…having a blog is a great way to get the digital footprint conversation going as well as model best practices for using 21st Century tools to build professional learning communities and personal learning networks that support the work we do. In fact, I think it would be terrific if all educators with professional blogs celebrated and shared their work in their email signatures.
No doubt, employee blogs can be problematic and are not always to be celebrated. And I do recognize the need to monitor what people in your organization are doing. But the reality here is this: educators in New York City who want to connect and share with other educators around the world are going to do that. Some of them will do it well, others, notsomuch. Celebrate the former, educate the latter. Learn from the experience and from the sharing that takes place. In the end, this is once again just lazy policy in action.