Leveraging LinkedIn for your school websites
LinkedIn - it’s a great addition to your school websites!
Whether you’re an administrator or teacher, creating a LinkedIn account can be the perfect way to professionally network, reconnect with old friends or faculty members, and read up on new ways to revamp your school culture, teaching style and so much more.
Join LinkedIn Groups to meet thousands of other administrators and teachers in a place to connect, ask questions and engage in conversation while gaining knowledge on various topics.
- If you’re just starting out with your LinkedIn account and you’re not sure how to use it, joining a group is a great first step. With thousands of people in a single group who are sharing interesting articles and topics of conversation, it’s a great space to learn how to best use your account and start connecting with people who share the same interests and goals as you. For example, groups are where you can get ideas on how other schools are using their school websites, sharing information to their school communities as well as engaging their parents and students. If you’re looking to keep up with the trends of other school, this is a great tool for insight.
- Each school has their unique approach to showcasing and marketing their schools. They might have tips for what makes a great first impression when visitors check out their school websites, but also what tips they use to increase enrollment and streamline their efforts.
- Also, if you’re looking to take a stronger stance in education, connecting with people and marketing yourself as a credible source in educational and academic information will help in not only branding yourself, but also the school you work at.
- Even better, if you’re looking to get more involved with your alumni and keep them involved in your school community, you can even create your own alumni group. Reach out to your social media channels to get the word out that you’ve created a LinkedIn community for your school’s alumni and start growing your group! You might find an old student who’s enthusiastic about organizing mixers and events and will start developing an alumni association with regularly scheduled events!
LinkedIn Pulse Discover delivers news related to your professional interests that you can read and use as a springboard for thoughtful classroom discussions.
- Teachers, if you’re looking for current event articles to introduce more critical thinking topics, LinkedIn is an excellent source. Most articles you’ll find on LinkedIn are for business people and professionals; the writing style and audience are for working people, but the topics are more advanced and lend themselves to developing better reading comprehension and preparation for college.
- It can sometimes be difficult to update your syllabus every year to include relevant information that will entice your students and keep them engaged. Simply Googling topics to introduce to your syllabus can lead you to abstract articles that are not the best fit for your class, but having articles that are specifically tailored to you and the interests you know will capture your students' attention, well, there’s nothing better than that.
- LinkedIn recently updated their age restrictions for creating an account to 13-years-old. It could become a class project for students to create their own profiles and use it as a research tool for papers, projects and gathering information on what they want to be when they grow up.
Just like your school websites can be the best opportunity for a great first impression for potential parents and students (and staff!), keep your professional resume updated on your LinkedIn profile for potential faculty who are researching your school and the people who work there.
- Especially if you’re a principal or director for a school, you will most likely be the one interviewing incoming staff members and representing the school overall. Therefore, maintaining your LinkedIn account will not only represent you as a working professional, but also as a representative of your school community. Include the colleges you attended in your profile and join their networks to connect with old classmates and educators that might want to come work with you. Think about encouraging your staff members to create their own accounts and start updating them!
- LinkedIn is also an excellent resource to find qualified candidates for academic positions. Posting a job on Craigslist versus one on LinkedIn attracts different types of candidates and will include more licensed and experienced people. This will also reflect how serious a candidate is, because many times they will apply with their LinkedIn profile, and there is usually a lot more information there than on their single-page resume. You can develop a more well-rounded perception of the candidate and learn if they keep up with the current trends, technology, and what their hobbies are - things you would otherwise need an interview to learn about. (This would be a great option in addition to posting job openings on your school websites!)
Connecting with universities is a great resource for getting more information from colleges your high school seniors are looking to attend and stay updated with their admissions department.
- It has become more common in the world of LinkedIn to reach out to people you have not met before and send them “InMail.” InMail is what LinkedIn calls messaging, and if you’re looking to get to know someone who works in a specific field or to learn some more information about their job, this is a great tool. For example, if you’re looking to meet someone who works in the LAUSD, you can search by industry or title and find someone you are looking for. Stay as professional as possible, and use the “connect” feature with respect
- College counselors, here’s an idea:
- During senior year, it may be a good idea to have your students create their own LinkedIn account. It’s important to start building their network and propel them forward in staying focused and working on their professional development as they progress through college. Even better, once they start receiving their acceptance letters, they can join their college’s network and start connecting with older students and begin thinking about what they want to study, what clubs they want to join, and what kind of experience they’re looking for. It could lead to unexpected opportunities!
- It’s also a great space to include any leadership experiences, internships, or projects they have worked on to start developing their resume. Many companies are very interested and supportive of having college students, and even high school students intern for the summer. It’s never too early to start gathering work experience and developing the skills that will nurture mature, professional people.