Missouri Makes Teach-Student Facebook ‘Friending’ Illegal

08/04/11  MSM.com -Missouri has passed a law making it illegal for state teachers to friend their students on Facebook.

Governor Jay Nixon signed Missouri State Bill 54, which bans students and teachers from communicating and being “friends” on the social networking site. The law was created to prevent inappropriate relationships between children and teachers.

“Teachers cannot establish, maintain or use a work-related website unless it is available to school administrators and the child’s legal custodian, physical custodian or legal guardian,” the law states. “Teachers also cannot have a non work-related website that allows exclusive access with a current or former student.”

The law is not limited to Facebook and applies to any social networking site. Although Facebook fan pages will still be allowed, direct communication between teachers and students on the site will be banned.

Although some critics have said the concept sounds positive on the surface, they worry it may imply that teachers may not be trusted on the site without legal intervention.

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