NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Middle Tennessee high school has a new high-tech tool to fight bullying.
It’s a phone app called “Stop It” that allows students to report bullying incidents confidentially.
Creek Wood High School in Dickson County is the first school in Tennessee to implement use of the app.
“I think everyone has seen, like, hazing or bullying somewhat through their years of school,” said Principal Drew Williams. “I wanted to reach out to students in their own language, and that’s their language.”
With the app, students can text details of the situation on their phones. Administrators will get a notification, and it’s completely anonymous.
“Instead of us being reactive all the time and saying we’re waiting for a problem to arise, now we’re spending our time on the front end mitigating those problems,” said Williams.
Administrators have investigated 100 reported incidents since February.
While most school districts have zero-tolerance policies, bullying can be difficult to prove.
If there’s ongoing, repeated bullying over time with the intent to harm, the school resource officer is called in and suspension is likely.
Principal Williams said there will always be kids who don’t feel comfortable going to a teacher, and that’s where the app comes in.
“This app gave a whole group of students a voice,” he explained.
So far, the school says the app is working. Students said it’s sparked an important conversation about how to treat one another.