By Samantha Soroczak –
Forty-three percent of teens aged 13 to 17 report that they have experienced some sort of cyber bullying in the past year alone. During a MTV forum on October 14th, President Obama discussed the important issue of cyber bullying. He talked about his recent summit with the Department of Education which focused on helping state and local government create a method to stop bullying and protect those being bullied. The President wants to create policies which will support schools in taking a zero- tolerance stance against all forms of harassment; including face-to-face bullying and, of course, cyber bullying.
At Seton La-Salle we too, like many other schools, have been subject to cyber bullying. We have seen an increase in cyber bullying in the past years with last year being at the highest. Mrs. Caves, Seton-La Salle Guidance Counselor and Mrs. Martin, Seton-La Salle Principal are going to anti-bullying conferences to see what they can do to for a solution. Some anti-bullying techniques would be to have role play scenarios. However, they are putting emphasis on not only the victim or the bully, but on the bystanders. At Seton La-Salle we focus on mediating and allowing more one-on-one comunication in the problem solving process.
With the popularity of facebook, instant messaging, e-mail, blog and text messaging, kids are potential targets for cyber bullying practically every day. Students are no longer safe from their bullies and can no longer take refuge in their own homes. Bullies are able to take on an anonymous persona with the use of temporary fake email accounts, fake names, and instant messaging programs. These anonymous recourses give kids the ability to hide behind the safety of their keyboards and say whatever they want to.
A message that the school wants students to understand is that everyone sees what they write down. Students are held more acountable if the words are written down and those words cannot go away as easily as if they just say it. Mrs. Caves believes that, “everyone deserves to be safe and happy at Seton.”