ANTI-CYBERBULLYING POLICY

Marshfield Primary School

No place for bullies!

Introduction

 

Virtual Bullying

With more and more people using e. mail and mobile telephones, bullying does not always happen in person.

Silent telephone calls, abusive texts or e mails can be just as distressing and intimidating as meeting the bully face to face.

 

Cyber Bullying

This is sending or posting harmful or cruel text or images using the internet or other digital communication devices.

 

Bullying in all its forms has no place in Marshfield Primary School.

 

Research identifies seven categories of cyber bullying:

Text message bullying: involves sending texts that are threatening or cause discomfort.

Picture/video bullying via mobile ‘phones: used to make a person threatened or embarrassed.

Mobile ‘phone bullying: uses silent calls or abusive messages. Often the person disguises their number and sometimes uses another's ‘phone to send the messages.

Email bullying: uses emails to send bullying or threatening messages often using a false name or someone else to pin the blame on them.

Chat room bullying: involves sending menacing or upsetting responses to children when they are in a web based chat room.

Bullying via instant messaging: an internet based form of bullying where children are sent unpleasant messages as they conduct real-time conversations online (MSN, BEBO, etc.)

Bullying via web sites: includes the use of defamatory blogs and personal web sites.

 

What can you do as parents?

  • Don't wait for something to happen before you act. Ensure your child knows how to use the technology in safety.
  • Make sure they know what to do if they or someonethey know are being cyberbullied.
  • Encourage your child to talk to you if they have problems with cyberbullying. If they do have problems, contact the school, the mobile network of the Internet Service Provider to do something about it.
  • Parental control software can limit who your child send emails to and who he / she receives them from. It can also block access to some chat rooms.
  • Moderated chat rooms are supervised by trained adults. Your service provider will tell you whether they provide this service.
  • Make it your business to know what your child is doing online and who your child's online friends are.

 

Some tips on staying involved:

  • Keep the computer in a public place in your house. Check what your child is doing at odd times. Discuss the internet activities your child enjoys.
  • Tell your child that you check their computer usage.
  • Tell your child that you will check their private communication if you feel that they are behaving irresponsibly.

 

Advice to Children

1. Always respect others and think before you send. What you think of as a joke may cause hurt to someone else.

2. Passwords-do not let anyone know your passwords and change them often. Choose hard to guess words with symbols and numbers. Remember to give your mobile telephone number or personal website address only to your trusted friends.

3. Block the Bully-most good web sites allow you to block or report someone who is behaving badly. Make use of them as they are there to keep you safe.

4. Don't retaliate or reply! Replying to bullying messages, particularly in anger, is just what the bully wants. Report to an adult who you can trust.

5. Save the evidence. Keep all offensive messages, pictures or on-line conversations. These will give you the evidence you need to show what is happening to you.

6. Make sure you tell someone. You have no right to be bullied or upset. There are people who can help you:

  • Parent / guardian;
  • Your teacher;
  • An adult you can trust;
  • Childline on 0800 1111
  • Your mobile operator or social network provider. Their web site will tell you how you can report it.

 

DO NOT KEEP QUIET!

November 2010