Starting August 28, being Facebook friends with your teacher is illegal in the state of Missouri. The bill covers social networking in general, so not only can you not associate with your teacher on Facebook, you’ll also have to stay away on Twitter, MySpace, or any other social networking site you might use.
The idea behind the rule is that it will help better define teacher-student boundaries. Teachers ARE allowed to create a page in Facebook Pages; however, to interact with students on a slightly more personal level.
The rule is certainly an interesting one. On a basic level it makes sense that students and teachers shouldn’t be Facebook friends; however, I seriously doubt that social networks are responsible for any of the inappropriate relationships that the state is trying avoid. I think those types of bad relationships will more than likely show up anyway, regardless of whether or not the two can have a poke fight on the internet.
While Facebook wasn’t around in my grammar school days, I was “friends” with several people who also happened to be teachers. It will be interesting to see how Missouri enforces the law.
What do you think about the state telling teachers and students to not be friends? Will it prevent any issues?