I love seeing what people can do when they are inspired. This morning, the school division I work for didn't close or delay school even though it is snowing. Granted, it was only a few inches, but a few inches here (in Northern Virginia) can have a huge impact. So much so that I am sitting in an Economics classroom watching a class because their teacher couldn't make it to work. I have friends who have been in their cars for three hours attempting to get to work...but that's not my point.
As a way of getting the division to close and to share storm/traffic/safety conditions around the county, students (and parents) have been using the hashtag #closefcps on Twitter. This might seem something minor and reasonably isolated - except it's not. At one point this morning, it was the highest-trending hashtag on Twitter. Ahead of everything else. This has been retweeted and featured by national news.
Think about that.
Some students complaining about the weather decisions of the division was more popular and widely used than anything else on Twitter. More so than The Bachelor (which apparently has a big episode last night), sports, news, and everything else. The reach of these kids and their message is not something to be overlooked.
Gone are the days of disgruntled students at a school passing around a paper petition in hopes of changing things in a building. Today's #closefcps storm shows just how powerful the people are. The students in the 10th largest division were able to organically join forces (read: zero planning) and essentially disrupt the nation to an extent.
Obviously, complaining about a weather decision and working the division to close early isn't earth-shattering. But, imagine if this were applied to a grassroots effort to improve learning opportunities or end abuse or hunger. The impact and reach we have today is amazing. We just need to figure out how to use it.
I'm a Technology Coach and IT Support for a school. I'm passionate about 1:1 classrooms technology in instruction.