Teacher rating sites are proliferating at a surprising rate. Sites like RateMyProfessors and Rate My Teachers are becoming more commonly used every day. Unfortunately, it can often add another layer of problems on what is already a tough job. Here's what you need to know about school teacher reputation management.
Why Is Teacher Reputation Management Necessary?
Teachers more often than not find themselves facing students, or parents of students, with an axe to grind. Few people really make the effort to understand how difficult it is to teach. This is especially true if a teacher gave a grade that, for some reason or another, was felt to be "unfair," if the teacher is seen to be holding a particular political bias or any of a host of reasons. Worst of all, some of these sites allow total anonymity, meaning you've now got a teacher reputation control problem to deal with, and with no potential consequences for the student.
While angry students and angrier parents are nothing new, and plenty of teachers get positive reviews as well, a lot of negative reviews piling up can make for a difficult time for some teachers. They can come up during professional reviews or make classes less popular among students. What's an education professional to do?
Use teacher reputation management. Here's how to get some control of your reputation online.
Work closely with students and your reputation will be rewarded.
The Keys To Education Professional Reputation Management
First and foremost, consider having a professional social media presence. This can be a Facebook profile or blog where students can speak to you about issues or weigh in directly, and you can help them as needed. It can also serve as a way for students to stay in touch and for you to offer supplementary course materials.
Lock down your personal profile, don't friend students or parents with it, and make it clear to friends that they need to avoid tagging you. Unfortunately, like it or not, some parents expect teachers to not have a personal life and teachers have had serious setbacks over "issues" as simple as wearing a swimsuit and posting a picture while wearing it.
Address student concerns both in class and online, possibly on your social media presence. Part of any student concern is the fact that they want to know their teachers are paying attention to what they think. If they know you're listening, that can solve many problems before they start. A strong social media presence helps with schoolteacher reputation management.
Don't let students obviously venting about not doing the work or otherwise taking out their frustrations bother you. It's unlikely that an illiterate screed about how you force them to actually read books will have much weight with your colleagues or administrators.
If you sense something will be an issue, clearly document everything. For example, if you have a discussion with a parent about a student's situation, and the parent goes away dissatisfied, send them a detailed review of their discussion over email and ask them to clarify their perspective or any points they may have. This way, you also have something to to bring to administrators if said parents resort to slander online.
You don't have to just take smeared reputations. ReputationDefender can show you effective social media and privacy strategies to help keep your teacher reputation intact and your privacy safe. Don't face this alone. Contact ReputationDefender today.