29 August 2012

The Simplest Disclosure

Paranoid about privacy, I took advantage of Photoshop's
mosaic filter. Just marquee a spot you want to blur, go to
Filter>Pixelate>Mosaic and choose how big you want
those blurring tiles.
What do we do when we want to obtain some information? We Google it. Or, if we know the URL of the organization we're looking for, we type that straight in.

(Then again, I have far too many students who, even when they know a URL, will Google it anyway. See my post about computer literacy for that rant.)

This being the beginning of school, parents out there are probably swimming in disclosure information. Teachers fill those things with anywhere from one to three pages of policies, procedures, grading scales, and whatever else their school wants them to communicate to parents.

It's too much, I say. And, chances are, when the student and/or parent suddenly needs to find out this information, that disclosure is long-gone.

Which brings me to the point of this post: the online disclosure, and the little piece of paper to accompany it. Just hand this 1/4 size flyer to every student that has the absolute basic information on it. Parents who actually care about the full disclosure information can find it and more on the website—sometimes with pictures!—without wasting all that paper and ink. And, with the magic of Google Docs (Forms, in particular) I can embed a form that feeds straight to a spreadsheet, so I have all that information in a searchable database rather than a bulging file folder. (I think I already talked about this on my helpful tech page.)

Another reason to post all this stuff online is that I can make changes as the year progresses. In such an event, I'd simply shoot an email to all the parents and say hey, I made some changes to the food/drink policy or whatever. Check it out if you want.

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