Government acts on Cyber-bullies

The BBC have published an article today highlighting the Government’s new plans to address the issue of Cyber-bullying. According to the article, up to one in five pupils have been bullied via the internet or a mobile phone. Guidelines have been provided that set out simple steps that schools, parents and pupils can take to prevent cyber bullying. These include:

  • Schools including strategies to deal with cyber-bullying in their mandatory anti-bullying policies
  • All communication technology on the site, or as part of school activities off site, should be monitored and, where necessary, restricted
  • Parents should ensure that they and their child understand how to use technology safely
  • Young people should not respond to abusive e-mails, text messages or phone calls, but should always tell an adult and contact their service provider for advice on how to block calls, keeping e-mails and texts as evidence
  • Young people should keep to public areas of chatrooms and never give out personal contact details online or post photographs of themselves

One key focus should be to encourage self reporting because as the article states, ‘a third of those who experience cyber-bullying do not report it.’

Also, the Teaching Union NASUWT has called for the guidelines to be incorporated into school discipline policies to protect staff in light of the research which suggests ‘teachers were also increasingly being abused via the web, e-mails and phones.’

I welcome your comments on this topic!

To read the full article, click this link: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/5210886.stm

MSN have also released their cyber-bullying report which highlights some interesting statistics. To read this report click this link: http://www.msn.co.uk/customercare/protect/cyberbullying/Default.asp?MSPSA=1

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