Yesterday I was pleased to see that an ex-P7 student had deal with an incident of email bullying in a textbook manner. Of course, there’s no way to prove that the student’s response was as a direct result of internet safety training in school, but it was encouraging none the less.
A parent had called about some abusive emails his child had been receiving from a classmate. After investigation, with the parent’s permission I was able to dig out the evidence, and forward the emails to the school involved for follow-up. It was clear that the problem had extended beyond school email and had included use of text messaging.
What was really encouraging, though, was the discovery that the child had not only raised the issue with his or her parents, but had also:
- responded calmly to the abusive emails, and not made things worse
- sent an email to the class teacher to let her know
The end result of the student’s commendable action is that positive action is now under way to resolve the situation despite it being a month or so until school resumes.
The case also highlighted for me a potential new issue for school internet safety arrangements. As new technologies facilitate out-of-school communication, do we need more joined-up arrangements to provide reliable cover of internet safety issues during holiday periods?