ONLINE CYBER BULLYING GAME: Complete brochure in relation to cyber bullying and how we can prevent it in our schools?
The issue of cyber bullying is perhaps one of the greatest contributing factors towards the reluctance of educational institutions to implement further utilisation of online technologies within the classroom. According to the Office for Internet Safety cyber bullying is defined as ‘bullying which is carried out using the internet, mobile phone or other technological devices’, with repeated aggression in generally a psychological form. Cyber bullying can have severe emotional and social consequences for an individual with the ease of misinterpretation, wide scale publishing’s and inability to remove information being a major concern for child protection. Many schools attempt to avoid the issue all together by banning or discouraging the use of online sites such as social networking and blogs.
Whilst the Office for Internet Safety has clearly identified the many forms of cyber bullying such as personal intimidation, impersonation, exclusion, personal humiliation and false reporting; and the severity of these issues in relation to a child’s safety at school and at home, it is important that schools do not compromise their students education in an ever modernising society with the fear of cyber bullying resulting. As seen in the previous blog entry, Web 2.0 and online interactive sites have the ability to greatly enhance the learning of students with a variety of learning styles, exposing them to information and insights not otherwise available. It is for this reason that schools should attempt to take preventative measures to reduce the possibility of cyber bullying as opposed to preventing the use of online interactions all together.
Schools should educate their students on how to best care for themselves and others and how to make informed decisions when using the internet. An anti-bullying policy should be implemented within the school that implicates the students when using online sites both at home and at school. Children must also be provided avenue to report any forms of bullying anonymously and be encouraged to do so (Office for Internet Safety).
If the physical school environment promotes positive relationships and discourages acts of traditional face-to-face bullying, it is much more likely that the online environment will reciprocate these actions and behaviours and cyber bullying will be of much less prevalence.
Office for Internet Safety. (n.d) Get with it. A guide to Cyber bulying. Retrieved from http://www.rcysostenibilidad.telefonica.com/es/ media/pdf/Get_with_it_Cyberbullying_Booklet. pdf