Students and parents will soon be able to alert Mokena School District 159 officials about cases of bullying in any of the district's three schools via the internet.
On Wednesday, the Board of Education was presented with a preview of the new online bullying survey. It is scheduled to be posted on the district’s website by late Friday afternoon.
Superintendent Steve Stein said the idea came about a few months ago after some parents expressed concerns about the limited ways bullying could be reported.
“It’s kind of one of those things that you know always exists, but a lot of times I think kids are apprehensive to report incidents of bullying," he said. "They think that it’s going to make things worse for them.”
Stein is hopeful that the district will be able to act in a timely manner on bullying situations based on information submitted in the surveys.
The district looked into what other school districts, including Barrington District 220, are doing regarding collecting bullying data before deciding on a basic design that fits their needs well, he said.
All submitted surveys will be sent to Stein, director of student services Eileen Parente and the principal of the school that the informant chooses in the survey.
A hard copy of the survey will also be available Friday. All data from the hard copies will be manually entered into a district database documenting bullying cases.
Some important areas for users to fill out on the survey include contact information – otherwise it will be hard to pursue the case – along with where the bullying occurred and what type of category it would fall under, such as cyber bullying.
Stein acknowledged that there is a chance some of the stories filed in the surveys will be false, but overall he thinks it will be a good resource.
“I’ll be interested to see how the data comes out,” he said.
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