“Why Does a Teacher Feel the Need to Post My Kid?”: Parents and Teachers Constructing Morally Acceptable Boundaries of Children’s Social Media Presence

Davide Cino, Chiara Dalledonne Vandini


Posting about children on social media is common practice today, with adults acting as agents who make choices about these digital representations. This study focuses on the management of children’s online presence as debated in an online parenting forum by thematically analyzing 556 posts from 13 discussion threads about daycare and elementary school teachers sharing pictures of their students online. Findings show how this event is framed as a boundary crossing undermining parents’ ability to steward their children’s digital footprints. Furthermore, posters stress the risks associated with such photo-sharing behavior, construct moral identities creating the roles of the good or bad parent and teacher in a social media age, and propose solutions to regain control and restore parental agency. These findings suggest that this occurs to affirm the family as a higher-level system when it comes to setting boundaries about children’s social media presence.


sharenting, children’s social media presence, privacy boundaries, digital dilemmas, family-school communication

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