Daily, half of <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = “urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags” />America’s school children, approximately 12 million, are impacted by bullying on the bus and in school. Cyber bullying is in addition to this larger problem that impacts the quality of student education.
A partnerships with school, home, transportation, and community is required.
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The number of kids using the Internet makes it the preferred way to communicate. The Pew Internet & American Life Project reports that approximately 17 million kids aged 12 to 17 use the Internet.
Teens have embraced IM—74 percent of teens IM, compared to only 44 percent of adults. IM is the preferred cyber bullying medium of teenage girls.
Cyber Bullying incidents tracked at 6 percent in 2000 are now estimated in range of 18% to 42% of students in grades 4 through 8, say they have been bullied online.
Less than 20 percent tell their parents that they have been cyber bullying victims our of fear of loosing internet access.
It’s a cycle. Half of cyber bullying victims also display cyber bullying behaviors.
Cyber bullies sometimes leave their “electronic finger prints” behind. Electronic messages such as IM’s and emails leave “fingerprints”—nine-digit numbers recorded with your ISP (Internet Service Provider).
Cyber Bullying Preemption and Prevention In Schools
Launch a proactive, preemptive program that replaces the natural name-calling, bullying, taunting bullying behaviors with a positive focus. Re-norm what is considered cool at school
Kamaron Institute has successfully done with the KC3 Positive Label Program, which has proven to decrease bullying behaviors by 50 percent.
Make sure ethics and character as bullying preemption should be included in any computer instruction given at your school.
Partner with your PTA for a parent briefing on all cyber bullying as well as bullying on buses and in school.
Encourage your school district to develop a clear, comprehensive bully preemption and cyber bulling prevention policy on acceptable computer use, both on and off school property.
The policy should spell out what constitutes cyber bullying, and list consequences.
Establish a bullying prevention relationship with your local police department, perhaps inviting “cyber cops” to your school to speak to parents and kids on proper Internet use.