Though still apparently dismissed by some administrators as the online equivalent of “faculty bathroom graffiti” (huh?), teacher blogs are becoming increasingly influential in the education community and beyond, according to an article in U.S. News and World Report. Many teacher blogs—there are as many as 6,000, according to Technorati.com—are now being read not just by other teachers but by parents, elected officials, and policy wonks, the article notes.
They “raise important issues and give the rest of us a peek into a world that we see and hear about very rarely or only anecdotally through the media,” said Alexander Russo, an education writer who blogs at This Week in Education.
By nature of their occupation, teacher bloggers often find they have to walk a fine line between freedom of expression and discretion, but most don’t seem deeply bothered by the tradeoff.
Bill Ferriter, a well-respected 6th grade teacher in North Carolina, says he spends four hours every week working on his blog The Tempered Radical, and another hour every morning reading education blogs. For him, blogging is a way to discuss ideas with colleagues across the country and have a voice in education policy. Blogging, he says, is “the great equalizer. ”
A version of this news article first appeared in the Web Watch blog.