Remote Learning and Cyberbullying: Tips for Parents
When the COVID-19 pandemic struck, many thought that switching to remote learning would reduce bullying amongst kids. While that may be the case, it’s important to remember that increased virtual time opens up the potential for more cyberbullying.
Cyberbullying is the use of electronic communication to ridicule, intimidate, or threaten another person.
October is National Bullying Prevention Month, and in honor of this time, we’re highlighting some tips for parents on cyberbullying during remote learning, courtesy of PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center.
Set Expectations for Online Behavior
When your child starts using technology, talk to them about online behavior and set expectations. The precedent you set will allow you to return to this conversation and make adjustments accordingly as your child starts using new technology or online services.
Talk About Cyberbullying
With remote learning comes a slew of new online settings and locations. Your child may not recognize that their online behavior is hurtful. It’s important to define cyberbullying and address the steps your child should take if they witness it or experience it firsthand.
If your child tells you that they are being bullied online, let them know that you are there to help. You may be the first person they’ve shared that with. Let them know that they aren’t alone, and that you’ll find a solution together.
Document the Situation
If possible, keep a detailed record of the cyberbullying by saving screenshots and text messages.
Take the Appropriate Action
If cyberbullying is happening to your child during remote learning or in a virtual classroom environment, inform your child’s school. If it is occurring on a social networking site, refer to the site’s safety page for instructions on how to report the abuse and block the user responsible.
For information on cyberbullying and what you can do to help, visit PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center.