What is Cyberbullying and What Can We Do to Keep Children Safe?

OnlineTips for Parents.

Recent research suggests that many teens have had an experience with cyberbullying. Schools and
parents are often concerned about the potential for harm and can take steps to safeguard their
children. Links to websites that could be helpful are listed below

Bullying Facts for Schools and Parents by Andrea Cohn & Andrea Canter, Ph.D., NCSP, National
Association of School Psychologists.
www.nasponline.org/resources/factsheets/bullying_fs.aspx

What Parents Can Do About Cyberbullying -National Crime Prevention Council.
www.ncpc.org/topics/cyberbullying/stop-cyberbullying

National Mental Health and Education Center for Children and Families (NASP)
www.nasponline.org/families/index.aspx

Safe and Responsive Schools Project
www.indiana.edu/~safeschl/

Safe Schools/Healthy Students Action Center
www.sshsac.org/

"Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones--And Words Can Hurt, Too" by Donna Smith, Children Today
http://www.childrentoday.com/resources/articles/bullies.htm

National Resource Center for Safe Schools
www.nwrel.org/

The tips below are from a cyber security organization and may be helpful.

Safe and Secure Online Tips for Parents

Talk first: Kids are fascinated by what they learn about the world through the
Internet, so take the lead and talk with your child to make sure they understand the risks
without trying to scare them. They want practical advice aimed at fixing problems, rather
than to be warned off of risky activity. They want guidance but they are going to lead the
way in our digital world.
Reward sensible behavior: Encourage your child to ask for guidance and discuss
problems they may encounter online. This way you foster safe practices and build healthy
communications on this important topic.
Computers don’t belong in bedrooms: Most kids over 11 say they have
computers and laptops in their bedrooms. In one school, 85 percent of over 750 kids said
they had personal computers in their bedrooms, with 75 percent of them admitting to being
online after 11 p.m. on a school night. Children should not have unsupervised Internet
access. Keep computers in family areas.
Don’t rely solely on “parental controls”: These only work for younger children.
As soon as they are old enough for sleepovers, they are beyond your protection, so you will
need to educate them to be safe.
Understand that any Internet-connected device can have risks: Cell phones,
Wi-Fi-enabled handheld gaming devices and eReaders can be used maliciously as well, so
treat them as you would a computer and discuss the risks with your children.
(ISC)² is the world’s largest organization of certified cyber security
professionals with 70,000 members worldwide. Its Safe and Secure Online program is free to
schools.