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Internet Safety and Cyberbullying

Internet safety refers to the countless issues facing students due to the widespread use of the Internet, including the need to keep children and all users safe while online. Incidents of discrimination and harassment can begin or spread online. Therefore, schools and districts can examine policies to ensure safe and responsible Internet use by students and teachers, when technology is used for teaching and learning.

Traditionally, bullying has involved actions such as hitting or punching (physical bullying), teasing or name-calling (verbal bullying), or intimidation through gestures or social exclusion. In recent years, technology has given people a new means of bullying each other. Cyberbullying takes place through the use of computers, cell phones and other electronic devices. Examples of cyberbullying include:

  • Sending hurtful, rude, or mean text messages to others
  • Spreading rumors or lies about others through social media
  • Creating websites, videos or social media profiles that embarrass, humiliate, or make fun of others

Bullying online is very different from face-to-face bullying because messages and images can be

  • Sent 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year
  • Shared to a very wide audience
  • Sent anonymously

Everyone has an important role to play in keeping children safe and secure while online, and in preventing cyberbullying through any form of electronic communication. For more information on practices and policies that promote safe, respectful use of technology, see the Laws and Resources page.