Bullying, a behavior that hurts, harms, or humiliates someone physically or emotionally, is a serious issue that impacts thousands of students every day. As damaging as bullying may be, there is hope! With education and awareness, bullying can be prevented at school, in neighborhoods, and online.
What is Bullying?
Bullying is an unwanted, aggressive behavior that involves an imbalance of real or perceived power between individuals with the intent to cause harm. Students who are the targets of bullying behavior and those who exhibit bullying behavior toward others may suffer serious, lasting consequences. To be considered bullying, the behavior must include:
A Deliberate Act: To cause emotional or physical harm to another individual.
An Imbalance of Power: Those who bully use their power—such as physical strength, access to embarrassing information, or popularity—to control or harm others. Power imbalances can change over time and vary in different situations, even if they involve the same people.
Repetition: Bullying behaviors that display more than one time or have the potential to happen more than once.
Types of Bullying
Verbal, Social/Psychological/Relational, and Physical are three types of bullying outlined by the federal government and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Cyberbullying can involve all three types of bullying and 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. This type of bullying is becoming more prevalent every day. Examples include:
Demeaning or hateful text messages or emails
Rumors sent by email or posted on social networking sites
Embarrassing pictures, videos, websites, or fake profiles posted online
Why is Cyberbullying different than other types of bullying?
Students who are being cyberbullied are often bullied in person as well. Additionally, students who are cyberbullied have a more difficult time escaping the negative behavior.
Cyberbullying can occur 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and reach a student when he or she is alone and/or when in their own home.
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 are extremely difficult after they have been posted or sent.
What exactly is Cyberbullying?
Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place via electronic communications or digital devices such as cell phones, tablets, or computers. It is deliberate harassing, intimidating, shaming, or otherwise targeting another person via electronic devices. Cyberbullying is a serious act that has lasting consequences.
Cyberbullying commonly occurs on social media like text messaging through devices; instant messaging through devices; email provider services; social media message features; diary sites; interactive games; online profiles; Apps; and more. With easy access and the prevalence of such media and digital forums, personal content can be viewed by strangers as well as acquaintances. Racism, intolerance, and fear can also play a role.
Cyberbullying has special aspects. It can be persistent, permanent, and/or hard to notice. When it is persistent, it can be difficult for students who experience it to find relief. When cyberbullying is posted online, it becomes publicly available and may lead to a negative online reputation impacting college admissions, employment, and other areas of life. Cyberbullying is harder to recognize since educators and parents may not overhear or see it taking place. Similar to acts of bullying, students may be reluctant to report cyberbullying due to humiliation or embarrassment.
Social Media Bullying
According to bullyingstatistics.org cyberbullying statistics show most cases are taking place on popular social media sites. Social Media Bullying can take many forms, such as sending mean messages to people or threats to a person's life, aggressive or rude texts, tweets, posts, or messages. It can also be stealing a person's account information to publicize private information by spreading it on social media websites.
Anti-Bullying Apps for parents and students
If you think a child is being bullied
Report the bullying to any school employee either verbally or through our online report form.
Complaints of bullying will be investigated and resolved in accordance with the district's uniform complaint procedures .
When a student is reported to be engaging in bullying off-campus, we will investigate and document the activity and identify specific facts or circumstances that explain the impact or potential impact on school activity, school attendance, or the targeted student's educational performance.
When the circumstances involve cyberbullying, individuals are encouraged to save and print any electronic or digital messages that they feel constitutes cyber-bullying and to report it to a teacher, school administrator so that the matter can be investigated.