Friday, March 22, 2013

Cyberbullying Presentation

On March 22 we were lucky to invite an amazing speaker come talk to our 5th & 6th graders about cyberbullying.  Reggie Cajayon, School Safety Specialist from the Texas School Safety Center at Texas State University, brought to life an important safety message that continues to surface at schools across the country.  He presented a hands-on, engaging, and interactive way to educate students on what is cyberbullying (what it includes), the effects of cyberbullying (for both the victim and the bully), and steps to take if cyberbullied or know of cyberbullying (who to report to, etc.).  Students left feeling safe with what steps they need to take to prevent the threat of online predators and bullying.


Although Lee Elementary does not have a widespread issue, even one incident is one too many.  We are enlisting our families to help monitor online activities.

What to Monitor:

  • Online Gaming/Chatting: Game systems (Xbox, Playstation, Wii, etc)
  • Laptops & Social Websites
    • Grades K-2: Disney, Webkins, Poptropica etc
    • Grades 3-5 – Facebook, Gmail, Yahoo! Groups, MySpace, Twitter,
  • Cell Phones, iTouch, iPad ‘Apps’ (Instagram, etc)

How To Monitor:

  • Know the minimum user age recommendations for all sites
  • Read up on the American Academy of Pediatrics policy on media use:
  • Password protect all screens in house (TV, computer or internet devices, cell phones)
  • If children use technology, teach them to keep passwords secure and log-in where others can’t see or learn the password.
  • Know the safety measures to prevent access or bloc inappropriate content
  • Be cautious about your own social media habits.  Status updates, twittering details about daily activities, and “checking in” at locations leaves you vulnerable.  Children will want to do what you do when they get their own accounts.  Bullies and/or predators rely on posted information when they hunt for targets.
  • Maintain full parent access to all student use of email, phone and computer
  • Routinely log-in to see what persona your child projects when using technology
  • Talk about the short-term and long-term effects of what is posted online.

How to Intervene

  • If the privilege is being abused or is the source of too much distraction, remove the device or the power source.
  • Tell them to “Stop, Print & Tell” if they receive something that makes them uncomfortable
  • Contact social network providers to access the full range of options available to you to safeguard your child and his/her information.
  • If you have a concern off-campus, call Austin Police Department by dialing “3-1-1”, the non-emergency line.  Call “9-1-1” if you fear a threat or imminent harm is involved.

 What is Lee Elementary Doing?

  • Guidance lessons on building relationships, practicing social emotional skills, lessons on bullying, decision making, tattling vs. reporting, conflict resolution, and internet safety
  • “No Place For Hate” Campus – Promoted by the Anti-Defamation League to conduct annual building-wide activities that combat bullying, violence, including student-signed “Resolution of Respect”
  • 5th & 6th Grade Cyberbullying Presentation
  • Staff Training - Cyberbullying and bullying prevention, reporting incidents, prevention, internet safety

We all work hard to raise children who grow into caring, thoughtful adults.  They make mistakes in the process and hopefully learn along the way.  However, the permanence of words and images in cyberspace adds intensity and longevity to the consequences. 

For more information go to:

US Dept. of Health and Human Services: 

Center for disease Control: “Electronic Media and Youth Violence”:

Also check out my tab on Cyberbullying and Internet Safety with links to games, activities, and resources.
Thank you for your partnership in helping to keep all children safe.

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