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Cyber Bullying in School

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Social Networking has taken bullying to the extreme. Before advanced technology, children and teenagers were troubled by school bullies. Today, they are targeted by bullies via internet. Most people undergo some form of bullying in life. Growing up, I experienced the typical name calling and spiteful comments

I also dealt with minor cases of virtual bullies. These bullies are known as cyber bullies. I find this topic compelling because it’s a matter that has spiraled out of control. “Cyber bullying is defined as using the computer or other electronic devices to intimidate, threaten or humiliate another individual,” Admin October 13th, 2008.

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An old school yard problem has taken on a new electronic face for the twenty first century. No longer is the bully confined to the halls of the high school, they are now going home with students in their cell phones and in their computer monitors. Cyberbullying has become a new trend with terribly destructive consequences. The effects of cyberbullying have been linked to negative academic, social and mental consequences for targets and perpetrators alike. Due to the fresh nature of the problem, schools and parents have had difficulty in developing programs and policies that effectively deal with these behaviors at home and at school. The following paper provides a sound discussion of this new phenomenon and offers proposals for educators and parents on how to address and prevent cyberbullying among youth. It is time we combat this social problem and take a stronger stand against cyberbullies. Schools must establish that any type of bullying is unacceptable and perpetrators will be punished

By adding cyberbullying into student codes of conduct, educators and students enter a contractual agreement where penalties can be applied. Currently it is difficult for teachers and administrators to punish cyberbullies so adding this definition to student handbooks will give educators cause for suspending or expelling offenders. This sends the message that this type of harassment will not be tolerated. Most policies involving cyberbullying are reactive and do not address why these behaviors occur. Schools are encouraged to employ programs that openly discuss the dangers of cyberbullying and what targets can do when they become victimized. The goal is to take a proactive step and prevent cyberbullying from ever occurring.

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Children and teens are easy targets for cyber bullies since they do not have sufficient knowledge to help them in determining whether the people that they interact with over the internet are genuine. The advancement in cell phone and computer technology has made it possible for cyber bullies to gain a 24-hour access to the internet. This has made it easy for them to conduct their online activities in a more efficient manner. As a result, they are now able to convince their targets in a more effective manner thereby making them to fall prey to their online activities easily (Shariff, 2010). Online harassment is an issue that worries many people all over the world. In this case, cyber bullies torment other people with hateful and hurtful text messages, emails, blogs, and instant messages. These forms of harassment offend, humiliate, and intimidate victims severely. Online harassment affects children, students, parents, teachers, and organizational managers. Cyber bullies also ruin the reputation of their victims thereby making them feel as if they are worthless. They normally target reputable people in a society by giving false information about them (Kowalski, Limber, & Patricia, 2012).

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In the long run, what will always be needed to overcome such a situation is the support of adults towards children and young people that have fallen victims to the dark pits of the internet. Parents especially must not forget that. Since bullying through internet and mobile phones cannot really be stopped then the next best way to deal with it, is to make children immune to it

Children should be taught to avoid it and go on with their lives. They should be taught how to prevent bullies from using them as victims. Parents should help them build a strong personality.

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Kowalski, R M, Limber, S P & Patricia, W A 2012, Cyberbullying: Bullying in the Digital Age, John Wiley & Sons, New York.

Li, Q, Cross, D & Smith, P K 2012, Cyberbullying in the Global Playground: Research from International Perspectives, John Wiley & Sons, New York.

Shariff, S 2010, Truths and Myths of Cyber-Bullying: International Perspectives on Stakeholder Responsibility and Children’s Safety, Peter Lang, New York.

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