(585) 659-8903 FAX
David J. Doyle
Jr. Sr. High School
(585) 659-8988 FAX
(585) 659-8988 FAX
(585) 659-8940 FAX
(585) 659-8904 FAX
Dear Community Members, Parents, and Students:
Bullying in schools is a worldwide problem that can have negative lifelong consequences—both for students who bully and for their victims. Bullying is when a person is picked on over and over again by an individual or group with more power, either in terms of physical strength or social standing. Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior among students that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group on purpose. There are many other types of aggressive behaviors that don't fit the definition of bullying. This does not mean that they are any less serious or require less attention than bullying. Rather, these behaviors require different prevention and response strategies.
The website, stopbullying.gov, provides a considerable amount of information about bullying and its effect on children. Research tells us that children look to parents and caregivers for advice and help on tough decisions. Sometimes spending 15 minutes a day talking can reassure children that they can talk to their parents if they have a problem. Start conversations about daily life and feelings with questions like these:
There are many roles that kids can play. Kids can bully others, they can be bullied, or they may witness bullying. When kids are involved in bullying, they often play more than one role. It is widely known that cyberbullying is impacting students tremendously at this point in history.
- What was one good thing that happened today?
- What is lunch time like at school? Who do you sit with? What do you talk about?
- Who do you sit with on the bus?
- What are you good at doing in school?
- What do you like best about yourself?
Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites. Examples of cyberbullying include mean text messages or emails, rumors sent by email or posted on social networking sites, and embarrassing pictures, videos, websites, or fake profiles.
Kids who are being cyberbullied are often bullied in person as well. Additionally, kids who are cyberbullied have a harder time getting away from the behavior. Please consider the following facts:
- Cyberbullying can happen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and reach a student even when he or she is alone. It can happen any time of the day or night.
- Cyberbullying messages and images can be posted anonymously and distributed quickly to a very wide audience. It can be difficult and sometimes impossible to trace the source.
- Deleting inappropriate or harassing messages, texts, and pictures is extremely difficult after they have been posted or sent.
- Kids learn from adults' actions. By treating others with kindness and respect, adults show the children in their lives that there is no place for bullying. Even if it seems like they are not paying attention, kids are watching how adults manage stress and conflict, as well as how they treat their friends, colleagues, and families.
Be Aware of What Your Kids are Doing Online (stopbullying.gov)
- Know the sites your children visit and their online activities. Ask where they're going, what they're doing, and who they're doing it with.
- Tell your children that as a responsible parent you may review their online communications if you think there is reason for concern. Installing parental control filtering software or monitoring programs are one option for monitoring your child's online behavior, but do not rely solely on these tools.
- Have a sense of what your children do online. Learn about the sites they like. Try out the devices your children use.
- Ask for your children's passwords, but tell them you'll only use them in case of emergency.
- Ask a “friend” to “follow” your child on social media sites or ask another trusted adult to do so.
- Encourage your children to tell you immediately if they, or someone they know, is being cyberbullied. Explain that you will not take away their computers or cell phones if they confide in you about problems they are having.
Establish Rules about Technology Use (stopbullying.gov)
Again, these suggestions are downloaded from stopbullying.gov. All of these suggestions may not be appropriate for your family; however, I know we all can agree that keeping our children both physically and mentally safe must be a priority. Please email me with any questions. I look forward to working with you to continue to keep our children safe.
- Establish rules about appropriate use of computers, cell phones, and other technology. For example, be clear about what sites your children can visit and what they are permitted to do when they're online. Show them how to be safe online.
- Help your children be smart about what they post or say. Tell them not to share anything that could hurt or embarrass themselves or others. Once something is posted, it is out of their control whether someone else will forward it.
- Encourage your children to think about who they want to see the information and pictures they post online. Should complete strangers see it? Real friends only? Friends of friends? Think about how people who aren't friends could use it.
- Tell your children to keep their passwords safe and not share them with friends. Sharing passwords can compromise their control over their online identities and activities.
If you have any questions please contact me at 659-2706 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kendall Junior/Senior High School Principal