I was at an MMEA board meeting a few weeks ago and this came up and I realized I’ve barely touched on this topic but I feel really strongly about it! I absolutely 100% advocate for having a teacher email account, specifically Google, that isn’t related to your school. I know it’s another email to check but hear me out on why I think this is essential!

Keep School Out of It

I don’t know about y’all but my school emails have been like the endless parade of contact. ALL of the emails for everything including stuff that doesn’t really need to be sent to me. Keeping your “professional” email separate is a great way to ensure you see the music related things you need and they don’t get buried by all the emails about the new math curriculum. It also helps you separate important school info from the larger noise of email lists.

Keep Track of Subscriptions

I subscribe to a lot of emails. Companies I have bought from, my friends’ blogs, and emails from OAKE, NAfME, MMEA and the like. If I lost track of all of those with a job transition, I’d probably never remember everyone or forget the people that don’t send weekly emails. Chances are much higher that I’d miss something important that I actually need or want to know.

Keep Your Stuff During Transitions

I’ve seen so many posts of people asking how to move all of the contents of their Google Drive over to a new email when they change jobs. ALL that work. Unless you are moving to a job with a VERY specific curriculum, chances are you can use almost all of what you created again and again. Even if the order doesn’t stay the same, you don’t want to have to recreate the wheel! Keeping everything organized in a PERSONAL drive ensures that you’ll be able to keep your files! Unless the district you work for has a stipulation in your contract that things you create during your time there belongs to them, then keep it personal.

I paid for all my trainings, my conferences, levels, professional memberships, and things like that out of pocket. Keeping all of that in the school drive essentially gives them all that work, resources, handouts, and the like for free. I have had the experience of being locked out of my Google account from a school within 10 minutes of notifying that I was leaving. As in that was the first thing the admin did when I told them. If I had wanted to transfer things, I wouldn’t have even been able to do that.

Keep Resources You Make Organized

Putting stuff in a school shared drive is great until someone accidentally deletes the wrong thing, the district’s tech team does a clean out, or you are removed from access during the summer. YIKES. I don’t know about you but I would absolutely prefer to make sure I organize the files I need the way I want to have them organized and make sure I know that any missing things are my own fault!

Keep in Touch

Mentors, colleagues, contacts and all the work you do networking won’t be lost. This will make it easier as well when you are doing things like applying for jobs, writing letters of recommendation, or getting new contacts.

Especially if you are a new teacher using a school account. Some colleges will delete your email after so long. You won’t want to lose all that networking you’ve done!

A Few Tips

  • Tie the new email to your name and perhaps “music teacher” For example: MelissaMusicTeacher or StoufferMusicTeacher. Something that separates it from a personal email you have that is tied to your name. Try to avoid any numbers or special characters.
  • Organize your drive as you go. Find out a little more about Google Drive here.
  • Use this email ONLY for subscriptions, resources, professional memberships, and professional contact. Don’t accidentally give it to a regular old retail store.
  • Craft a professional signature with current positions, affiliations, etc (leave out images, they can be cumbersome and take up data).

I hope this has convinced you to create a separate Google account if you don’t already have one!

Melissa Stouffer-1

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