HELP! My district is making me stop blogging with my students.

Recently I got an email telling me that "the district does not endorse nor advocate the use of public blogs." They say they are still exploring a method of using private blogging- which means it won't happen for YEARS. I have gotten several compliments on my blog from parents and outside readers and other educators. I'm very passionate about using blogging in the classroom.
We only have 1 blog for my class (2nd grade) and we post on it daily to share something we're learning. I usually take a picture of an example of their learning with my iPhone and then upload it to the blog. I don't even put pictures of students on it. When students write a blog post, I always check it before posting. All comments are approved by me before posting.
The funny thing is they want me to use the school's webpage to post information. Anyone can post comments on it without prior approval.

My question is, how can I explain the importance and impact of blogging to the district so I can continue using this valuable tool for learning? Has anyone else had this problem??

Tags: administration, blogging

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So did the district ask you not to blog? Can you put a disclaimer at the bottom of your blog that says "the district does not endorse nor advocate the use of public blogs." Would that keep them happy? Private blogging can be done on Weebly for Education. You can give the parents a password for your blog. That way only people with the password see it. Ask if that will suffice? I'm not sure what else to say. I don't know if it is a lack of information your district have or whether they have some reason for saying this. Either way, I like the irony of being able to post anything on your school website.
Thanks for the tip with Weebly. I'll check it out. I've been using Edublogs- I'm even a paid subscriber.
I think you can do everything that you mentioned, other than having the kids blog, on your own, whether the district wants you to or not. You may just have to do it on a site that doesn't belong to the district. I also wouldn't even ask the district if that's ok (unless you are untenured).
Unfortunately, I am going on my 3rd year of Temporary status because I just moved. I had 7 years experience before! So frustrating!
How are we supposed to get our students technologically compliant with NCLB if we aren't able to safely use Web 2.0???
Maybe try Edmodo too? It is a micro blogging platform that can be password protected like Weebly.
I was able to do blogging this year by having a password-protected site and parental permission slips. I have my own private website through www.teacherweb.com, and it allows me to have password-protected blogs on it. I had to get special permission from my administration, and their initial reluctance turned to support and enthusiasm after they saw how excited the kids were about it! I also had to put a disclaimer on my home page releasing the school and district and have kids use only non-identifying usernames. It sounds like a lot of trouble, but it's been well worth it. Perhaps your district will reconsider if you put a ton of safeguards in place such as these (??). Good luck!
it's sad that we have to go through so much trouble just to circumvent nonsensical administrative thinking.
This was pretty much my situation. The school were wary because no one had done it before, but I got permission from all of my parents, use only first name identifiers, and do not use photos of the students. The kids do love it, and enjoy having somewhere to visit, find resources or post comments. My class website is public, but my upcoming student blogs will be private. I did not need to put a disclaimer on my site.

Da-lib, do you have a school board? I know you don't want any more conflict with your district admin, but you could try and appeal to the board and see if they could help you out at all.
Did you have to create the permission slips on your own? What does it look like?
See attached file for a sample of my permission slips. Feel free to use any or all of it.
Attachments:
Have you investigated having a blog added to the school website? Basically the software is the same as you have now but it is hosted with the school site and has a URL (web-address) that is based on the schools address. You would be able to set up exactly the controls that you have not, you would not be restricted to the school's lack of control over posts. It sounds like this would satisfy the district.

The biggest problem I see is if the school website is provided by the district (I am not from USA so I don't know the situation), because there would probably be enough red tape to prevent it. Here in Australia each school's website is independently owned by the school. Most web-hosts these days have a one button install for blogs, others would be able to add a blog easily enough. You could then copy everything from your existing blog to the new one.

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