Increased Volumes of Educators have embraced the organization’s official social media accounts in order to stay informed and to avoid fake news.
The revelation came through a School Representatives workshop held on 2 April 2022 at ZIMTA Ehlekweni Vocational Institute in Bulawayo which aimed at empowering educators with skills so that they can effectively execute their duties.
Presenting a topic on Media Intelligence for School Representatives, the Union’s Communications and International Relations Officer, Ms. Daisy Zambuko reinforced the positive development and urged more ZIMTA members to interest themselves in getting authentic information from the association’s social media platforms.
“Many a times you receive and hear false information about your Union only because you don’t follow our official social media sites where you are guaranteed of getting truthful information about any topical issue that you might want.
“Mostly its non ZIMTA members who are the first ones to get information on our accounts and they come to you saying otherwise. Comrades and friends we created these platforms to communicate with you as our members and it is the surest way for you to check and verify any information that you might be doubting.”
Zambuko said ZIMTA School Representatives are the sources of information for other members hence it was a must for them to be on social media and verify information.
The Communications Officer explained how the Union uses social media for its publicity as one of its community management tool.
“We use social media to connect with the members and to keep members informed through sharing regular updates on ZIMTA activities such as circulars, press statements and newsletters. We engage with members and respond to member questions which is one of the advantages of using these platforms as they provide feedback.
“Creating awareness of the brand to prospective members and partners in education, to enable members to share their different points of view and contribute to the growth of the organization and to connect with likeminded unions or partners with similar interests in the education sector,” said Zambuko as she explained how ZIMTA uses social media as a communication tool.
Mike Mukandiwa a School Representative based in Mash East said he was grateful that he had gained knowledge on social media issues and would use the platforms to execute his duties.
“My problem was on how to verify information which circulates on social media about my Union, it is after the presentation that l now know that l can visit the official media handles of my organisation to verify any misleading information.”
Matabeleland South based School Representative Blessing Mpofu said she had gained confidence and knowledge about the dangers of circulating fake information.
“I am now aware that the spread of false information about the Union can be done deliberately but, as a leader l now know how to differentiate true or misleading information and that it is only on ZIMTA social media pages where l get authentic information.”
Fake news is false or misleading information presented as news with the aim of damaging the reputation of a person or entity, it is also used for propaganda.
The School Representatives workshop’s theme was called “Educating for Strength and Growth.”