Private schools are asking parents to sign contracts promising not to spread malicious gossip on WhatsApp groups and other social media.
The Independent Association of Prep Schools (IAPS) said clauses are being added to parent-school agreements about ‘reputational damage’, telling parents that if they post comments hurtful to the school or other families they will be ‘asked to remove their children’.
Research by the Daily Mail has found a number of state schools are also having to issue similar warnings to parents.
Group conversations through messaging service WhatsApp have become commonplace across the country as a way for parents with children at the same school to share news and tips via their mobile phones.
Parents are able to send out messages about anything from own-clothes days and homework deadlines to borrowing spare football boots.
But in some cases the exchanges have become sinister, with parents insulting each other, gossiping about teachers, spreading falsehoods and sharing private information about children.
Christopher King, of IAPS, which represents 670 private prep and junior schools, said: ‘Increasingly, our member schools are adding clauses to their parent-school contract that states if parents post comments [on social media] that are reputationally damaging to the school or members of its community they will be asked to remove their children.’'
Read more: Private schools ask parents to sign contracts promising not to spread malicious gossip on WhatsApp groups
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