Cyber-bullying is still a significant problem that too many middle school students face. And, frankly, it’s not a problem that is easily solved. Since many adults today did not grow up dealing with this very issue, it can be difficult for them to relate to or combat the issue. Saying, “Don’t go on the internet,” just won’t cut it with pre-teen and teenage students, who are usually glued to their phones and iPads™, making them vulnerable to cyber bullies. While we don’t have all the answers here at Anderson’s Middle Zone, perhaps we can give you a few ideas for dealing with cyber-bullying in your school and/or community.
Foster a sense of team or school pride.
Placing importance on school pride and school spirit is a great way to make every student feel included. Bringing the student body together to support your school teams and clubs, and even fellow students, will boost their self-esteem. And when your students feel more confident, the number of cyber-bullying instances may go down. Some team/school pride ideas include pep rallies, cause events, Spirit Week, and more.
Another idea to boost school pride is to pick a piece of flair your students can wear to promote a “No Bully Zone.” Some flair ideas include custom buttons or stickers with slogans like, “Dude. Just Be Nice.”
Have an event to customize your school’s anti-bullying policy.
Get to the heart of the matter, and set some rules for dealing with this important issue. The best idea you can use for this event is to get students involved with drafting this policy. They know what it’s like to deal with it and they may have feedback and ideas that adults may not consider.
Cyber-bullying, unfortunately, is probably not going to go away. However, middle schools can do several things to put their school on the right path to dealing with it. The most important thing to remember with anti-bullying policies in your school is to do something.
Get students involved.
Keep students engaged.
Boost their self-esteem.
The more confident your kids, the less power cyber-bullies have.
Tell us what your middle school is doing to combat cyber-bullying!