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Running head: INTERNET ISSUES ASSIGNMENT: CYBER-BULLYING

Internet Issues Assignment: Cyber-Bullying Justin Keith Georgia Southern University - Georgia OnMyLine FRIT 7330: The Internet In Schools - Summer 2012 Dr. Lucilia Green

INTERNET ISSUES ASSIGNMENT: CYBER-BULLYING Internet Issues Assignment: Cyber-Bullying https://sites.google.com/site/cyberbullyingpd/laws/bcpspolicies

This policy is for the Baltimore County Public School System in Baltimore, Maryland. The policy defines cyber-bullying and explains what must happen when cyber-bullying takes place. The policy gives reference to other bullying policies. The weakness in this policy is that aside from defining cyber-bullying, it doesnt really address cyber-bullying. The policy instead chooses to treat cyber-bullying as just another form of bullying and doesnt really address any of the nuances associated specifically with cyberbullying. The policy references the student handbook, but the student handbook has no mention of cyber-bullying. Ironically, the weakness is also a strength. Because cyber-bullying is treated as a form of bullying, the discipline can be handled as needed by the administrators on an as needed basis. There is also a bullying report that can be downloaded, filled out and turned in anonymously if someone knows of bullying taking place.

http://policy.microscribepub.com/cgibin/om_isapi.dll?clientID=50580797&advquery=cyber&depth=2&headingswithhits=on&hitsper heading=on&infobase=johnston.nfo&record={B10}&softpage=PL_frame This policy is for the Johnson County Public School system in Johnson County North Carolina. The policy information concerning cyber-bullying is in the section concerning student network and internet usage. The policy explains that cyber-bullying is a problem on campus and off of campus and outlines rules and discipline. Further research concerning the development of this policy revealed that the policy is a direct effect of issues surrounding cyber-bullying in this county. Some might say that the specificity of the policy is a weakness. The policy is very specific in regards to cyber-bullying, yet broad enough to encompass most issues. While the policy spells out the responsibility of staff members, it fails to document consequences for staff members. This policy was recently adopted on May, 14 2012, so the currency of the policy is strength. I think one of the biggest strengths is the section that explains how the board recognizes the threats associated with cyber-bullying and how this policy seeks to address the

INTERNET ISSUES ASSIGNMENT: CYBER-BULLYING issue. The policy does an excellent job of addressing cyber-bullying while keeping the description of cyber-bullying broad enough to cover any instance that may occur.

https://eboard.eboardsolutions.com/ePolicy/Policy.aspx?S=4062&Sch=4062&PC=IFBGE&revN o=1.38&srch=IFBGE&ktype=Exact AND https://eboard.eboardsolutions.com/ePolicy/Policy.aspx?S=4062&Sch=4062&PC=JCDAG&rev No=1.12&srch=JCDAG&ktype=Exact This policy is from the Effingham County Public School District, and is the county in which I am currently employed. The first policy is Policy IFBGE: Internet Safety and it is the only policy that addresses cyber-bullying. The only mention of cyber-bullying is in item number six, which states provide age appropriate education to students pertaining to appropriate online behavior, including but not limited to, interacting with other individuals on social networking sites as well as chat rooms in addition to an awareness of cyber bullying and appropriate responses to cyber bullying. The second link deals with bullying in general, however cyberbullying is not mentioned at all. I wouldnt mention the second link except when I was researching this issue my supervisor and Assistant Superintendant seemed to think it was important to include. While I would like to suggest an improvement of the policy, I was cautioned about approaching administration concerning this issue. The weakness of this policy is that it barely mentions cyber-bullying. It almost seems as though cyber-bullying was tacked on as an afterthought and is only mentioned in order to be in compliance with state law. The policy may depend too much on being broad enough to cover any instance that occurs. It was explained to me that the broadness of this policy was by design and that it is actually a strength. The county attorneys and our current administration feel that the more broad a policy is, the more it can cover. The only other strength I can see in this policy is the recognition that there is a need for appropriate education concerning cyber-bullying.