One common question I see asked all the time is whether or not teachers should friend students on Facebook. Although you can set your privacy settings on Facebook to hide certain aspects of your life from groups of friends, this isn't fool proof. Friending everyone including students and parents simply begins breaking down yet another wall between your professional life and personal life.
What you can do is create a Facebook Page for yourself. This gives you a presence on Facebook that can be used professionally which is totally separated from your person life.
"A Facebook Page is a public profile that enables you to share your business and products with Facebook users. Create one in a few minutes with our simple interface."
Unfortunately, your created page has a very unwieldy url. Mine is http://www.facebook.com/pages/Ryan-Collins/181385642299. What I've done is setup a redirect from my website to point http://ryancollins.org/facebook to my Facebook Page. Be sure to become a friend when you visit! :-)
Facebook Pages are not limited to people either, you could also create a Page for each class you teacher or other departments within your organization.
More information about creating a Facebook Page:
- How to: Create a Facebook Fan Page
- 5 Elements of a Successful Facebook Fan Page
- How To Create and Promote Your Facebook Fan Page