DOE superintendent finds effective communications outlet in Twit - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

DOE superintendent finds effective communications outlet in Twitter

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Department of Education superintendent Jon Fernandez is exploring the use of Twitter. The age of technology has brought the medium of communication to new levels. Fernandez is embracing these changes by amping-up his social media presence.

"Since February I've been on Twitter," he shared with KUAM News, and using that as a way of reaching out to high school students and middle school students, in particular. I know that the middleschoolers have told me that Facebook is not really something that the middleschoolers use; it's for 'old people'," he joked. "So apparently, Facebook's not going to work for reaching out to all of the students, but Twitter seems to be a really active medium."

Twitter particularly allowed Fernandez to reach out to students during the recent controversy over Gupot Chamoru. He said he was able to provide information to the students as well as get realtime feedback on everything from the Chamorro Month activity to school lunches, late- or early-start times, and more. "The students really respond," he explained. "They think it's kind of cool to see the superintendent interacting with them, and when you walk out to the schools, they'll interact with you personally, because they've already done it online!"

He said it's important that students feel comfortable communicating with him. "Some individual students have shared their concerns things that they wanted me to know that they might not have felt comfortable sharing publicly," he said. Fernandez added this information is useful to him as superintendent and helps him determine issues facing the schools, noting, "They're our customers, they're the ones we're trying to serve in everything we do - in the classrooms, on the school grounds, and if I don't hear from them, then I'm missing a big part of the picture. So hopefully, it'll be a way for us to keep communicating."

So logically he invited everyone to follow him at @jfernand19.
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