Social Media Policy

Cushing Academy’s  goals for use of social media in education.
  • To learn and create life-long learners: We believe social media technologies provide an opportunity for our community to have access an endless flow of information. We must learn from our community how to access this information and learn to be critical evaluators of content. There is value to students in learning to harness social media, finding valid information in the quickest and most effective way.
  • To increase creativity and collaboration: The social media tools available provide students today a method to create content and share this content with a global audience. These same tools provide a way for students to collaborate strengthening the content created and deepening relationships through the communication process. Appropriate content creation and publishing are critical skills for student today.
  • To make connections:Cushing has a wonderfully diverse community with constituents across the world. Social media tools available today make these connections easy to make and keep up to date. Keeping a clean social media profile allows for these networks to be used in the future in professional relationships.
Expectations for use of social media in education at Cushing Academy.
Social media tools allow for members of the community to participate in the greater “Cushing” conversation. We desire to share our knowledge and expertise of the valuable curriculum and practices which make us a school on the cutting edge of 21st Century teaching and learning. It is the responsibility of members of the community when using the Cushing Academy name in social media to act in accordance with our high personal standards. We expect those using these tools and the Cushing Academy name to:
  1. Use social networks responsibly (no spamming, no using the tool for unintended purposes, bullying or using in an inappropriate manner, in accordance with Cushing student code of conduct.)
  2. Be aware that once something is posted to the Internet it is permanent.
  3. Use appropriate language, communication and digital images.
  4. Online engagement with people outside of the community should be selective. Your reputation is important to us and should be important to you. When making connections try to ascertain the identity of and confirm with certainty before working with other individuals online.
  5. Cushing Academy expects its community members to act in an appropriate and responsible manner in person and online. Should a community member be seen to deliberately violate these guidelines and the spirit of these expectations, the school may restrict, suspend or terminate access to the schools network and social media privileges or in extreme cases take further action, up to and including possible suspension or dismissal from Cushing Academy.
The Toolbox – Social Media Tools
The software tools which are in the “Social Media Umbrella” will be changing rapidly for the foreseeable future. Below is a list of tools which Cushing currently is recommending for use if applicable to the curriculum in your classes. Cushing will continue to educate students on the appropriate use of these tools and implications to your future if you use these site inappropriately. Remember once something is posted to the Internet it is permanent. College placement, future employers and everyone else may see information which is posted, even years later.

Social Networking
– Facebook, LinkedIn 
Microblogging – SnapChat, Twitter and Facebook
Social Media – You Tube, Vimeo, Google Video, Instgram, Flickr
Social Collaboration and Creativity – Prezi, Slideshare, Wikis, Google Docs, Blogging
Social Bookmarking – Delicious, Diggo
Use of Social Media Sites
Make sure when posting or writing online that all posts are appropriate. If you have questions, ask your advisor or another adult in the community for advice. Ultimately what you publish is your responsibility. These tools can help you to be more productive and help you to learn. Make sure your online activities do not interfere with your responsibilities or other commitments. In this area, keep in mind you need to be a leader be careful and considerate. Don’t get involved with harassing or rude comments; discontinue relationships online with people who participate in this type of behavior. Be thoughtful in your use; social networking technologies including Facebook, LinkedIn , Twitter and others are powerful tools which must be used appropriately.
Safety first when online
  • Never post your personal information such as your cell phone number, address or the name of the school.
  • Consider going through your current social networks and removing information that could put you at risk. This information online is available to people whom you don’t know.
  • Protect your friends and family by not posting names, ages, phone numbers, addresses or school locations.
  • Refrain from posting schedules of upcoming activities.
  • Think before you post photos. Once posted they are in public domain.
  • Don’t reveal personal information through photos such as where you live or where you go to school.
  • Never give out your password to anyone other than a guardian or parent.
  • Be careful of relationships developed online. You don’t really know who the other person is online. Never under any circumstance meet someone alone in person whom you have only met online.

Cushing Academy

39 School Street
Ashburnham, Massachusetts 01430

Cushing Academy

Cushing Academy exists for students and develops curious, creative, and confident learners and leaders. Founded in 1865, Cushing is a co-ed, college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12 and PG. Our students, who come from over 30 states and 30 countries, excel in our outstanding academic, art, and athletic offerings. We welcome you to visit our community and beautiful 162-acre campus in Ashburnham, Mass., just one hour from Boston, to experience all that Cushing has to offer.