Creating a Safe School Environment: How to Prevent Cyberbullying at Your School
Technology has changed the school yard or neighborhood bully. It no longer requires physical intimidation to be a bully. In fact, bullying can be done anonymously, on or off campus, and physical size does not enter into the scenario. Every year headlines identify children who take their own lives as a result of being victims of various forms of bullying. When technology is used to send the message or intimidate, it becomes cyberbullying. Using computers and cell phones, bullies can send threatening or harassing emails, set up offensive websites about the victim, and send harassing text messages or embarrassing photographs. The library media specialist is in a unique position to guide students, faculty, staff, and administration through steps to create an awareness of cyberbullying. This article discusses how school library media specialists can have an active role in addressing cyberbullying in schools through establishing policies on cyberbullying and promoting awareness and prevention of this form of bullying.