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Is There a Way to Change School Culture to Curb Cyber Bullying?

Is there a way to completely stop cyber bullying?

Not completely, but perhaps Canada is on to something. A new school approach to dealing with cyberbullying is not banning smartphones from the classroom but actually putting them to good use. A Canadian classroom is attempting to change school culture, and creating a safer and more positive environment for kids. Teachers are reinforcing digital citizenship in the classroom, so using phones, laptops and tablets are encouraged to be used in school. Students are learning to actually use their electronic devices appropriately! Geez, what a concept! Learning about good citizenship and treating peers with respect has become part of their weekly lessons. Love this!

Why aren't more classrooms in the U.S. doing this? We hear the term "zero tolerance" for bullying in schools across the country, and yet administrators still cannot stand behind their policy. The term is widely used amongst schools across the nation..."zero tolerance" for behaviors and consequences that follow. Yet, school heads and administrators are not backing up their words with actions. What consequences? In-school suspensions? If respect and good citizenship are not reinforced or taught on a regular basis, then how can school safety be promoted in schools across the country?

Zero tolerance, blah, blah, blah. I hear from so many parents saying that the zero tolerance means absolutely nothing if the follow through is lacking. Canadian teachers are implementing a skills based program in their classrooms by teaching students about zero tolerance. True, not ALL bullying incidences can be completely wiped out, but at least with this new approach that this Canadian classroom is using, kids are more prepared to deal with issues of social bullying. March to the beat of someone else's drum. In this case, we should follow the Canadian classrooms' lead. I am by no means saying this is a one size fits all answer to all the social media problems kids face on a daily basis. Completely banning cyberbullying is impossible, but at least it's a way to reduce the incidences of bullying and help kids feel safer. Amen.

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