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Media Literacy

Should Florida Students Learn Social Media Literacy in School? Some lawmakers think so

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Social media sites like Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, and Snapchat are used by children and teenagers around the world, and some Florida lawmakers want to make sure that students are educated about the risks and benefits of using these platforms.

For this reason, the Florida legislature will examine a bill in the 2022 legislature that will require the necessary instruction in “social media literacy”.

The draft law defines “social media” as a “form of interactive electronic communication via an Internet website or application, with which a user creates a service-specific user profile in order to communicate with other users of the Internet website or application for the purpose of communication connect and share information, ideas, news, stories, opinions, images and other content. “

If the legislation is approved by the legislature and the governor, social media knowledge would be added to other required instruction under Florida law, such as the history of African Americans and the history of the Holocaust.

In addition, school authorities would create classroom materials available online and inform parents of material availability.

The House version of the bill is endorsed by Republican MP Clay Yarborough, who represents part of Duval County, and Democratic MP Fentrice Driskell, who represents part of Hillsborough County.

The Senate version of the bill is sponsored by Senator Danny Burgess, who represents parts of Hillsborough, Pasco, Polk County and will be discussed during a Senate Education session Tuesday.

The staff analysis of the legislation finds that social media plays an essential role in today’s culture, especially among youth, and that “the need for teaching social media skills gives students a better understanding of the benefits and risks of communicating and sharing Communicate information on social media ”. Platforms. ”

These benefits include connecting with friends, meeting new friends through common interests, and sharing works of art or music, according to Billing Analysis.

The disadvantages of social media include cyberbullying, privacy concerns including data collection from teenage users and contact with dangerous people.

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