Educate Yourself About Cyberbullying
With the increase in availability of Internet access, text messaging, and email, it is easier than ever for young people to be victims of or perpetrators of cyberbullying. Parents need to stay connected with their child's school to see what programs, instruction, or procedures are in place for educating students about digital citizenship. This is part of the National Education Technology Standards, or NET Standards, that school districts are required to include in their local curriculum.
Here in Missouri, legislators have been working on this issue at least since 2008. There is a bill requiring school districts to have a policy which specifically addresses cyberbullying and establish just action regarding cases reported. Springfield R-12 Schools has such a policy in place to address several types of harassment. Most area schools have similar policies in place, which are available for public viewing either on the district's website or from the school office. There is currently a new bill being referred to committee in the state legislature which includes specific details about school board policy relating to cyberbullying.
From the Library's bookshelves*, you might read:
- Teen Cyberbullying Investigated: Where do Your Rights End and Consequences Begin?
- Are Social Networking Sites Harmful?
- A Smart Girl's Guide to the Internet: How to Connect with Friends, Find What You Need, and Stay Safe Online
- Protect Your Child From Bullying: Expert Advice to Help You Recognize, Prevent, and Stop Bullying Before Your Child Gets Hurt
From the Internet, ways to become informed and involved in cyberbullying Prevention:
- National Center for Bullying Prevention- geared towards upper elementary and preteens Includes games, surveys, and ways for kids to "spot and stop" bullying.
- Anti-Bullying Alliance- this is an organization in England, designed to address bullying through the Department of Education and schools; a good resource for educators.
- International Bullying Prevention Association- this organization has a mission to "support and enhance quality research based bullying prevention principles and practices in order to achieve a safe school climate, healthy work environment, good citizenship and civic responsibility."
- Stop Bullying Now- provides information from various US government agencies on how kids, teens, young adults, parents, educators and others in the community can prevent or stop bullying.
- Bull-E 2010, The New World of Online Cruelty- this is a multi-part series on cyberbullying, which began shortly after the Phoebe Prince incident happened in Massachusetts.
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