October is National Bullying Prevention Month, Anonymous Alerts® is raising awareness about critical cyberbullying issues impacting students in Texas and around the world. David’s Law is a new cyberbullying law in Texas effecting school leadership and how they handle and manage cyberbullying incidents.
Senate Bill 179 (“David’s Law”) makes it a Class A misdemeanor when someone harasses a student 18 or younger through websites, social media, text messages or other electronic means. Schools must also provide a way for students to send into a school for them to investigate. Parents must be notified within a short period of time if the school becomes aware of cyberbullying, cyber harassment incidents involving a student. Senate Bill 179 (“David’s Law”) went into effect as of September 1, 2017.
While most reported bullying used to take place on the school bus or in school, the new tool of choice by students is cyberbullying through texting, social media, and online gaming. Long term, bullying can lead to anxiety, mental health issues and weaken a student’ self-esteem ability to do well in school. Students who cyberbully have the capacity to be extremely cruel, digital devices make it easier for a student to conceal these digital threats. My company Anonymous Alerts® has seen this in thousands of schools nationwide.
School leadership has a heightened level of responsibility to deal with cyberbullying incidents, manage them as they come in and forward them to parents and/or law enforcement for investigation. The “Anonymous Alerts Student Reporting” software is a way for students to anonymously report bullying, cyber-bullying, drug or alcohol use/dealing, and other school safety issues directly to school officials. The “Anonymous Alerts Incident Management® app” for school officials, provides easy to use tools for reporting, management and analytics.