Vulcan County Central High School students are learning to fight cybercrime with technology.
County Central has become the first school in Canada to use the STOPit app, a mechanism for students to report cyberbullying to school staff or other trusted adults using their phone.
On Wednesday, students listened to Sgt. Tom Rich, STOPit’s cyber safety expert, explain the dangers and consequences of posting photos and comments online and how to stay safe, at a rally in the Vulcan Cultural Recreational Centre. A separate event for parents was held in the evening.
“There are so many dangers out there for kids and we all need to learn how to navigate digital communication safely,” said County Central principal Tracy Inaba.
“I think it’s our responsibility as a school to give our kids that digital citizenship to teach them how to navigate safely, and also give them a voice if they see something inappropriate, to give them a way of dealing with it.”
Inaba said if you ask any school principal, there are more and more incidents of cyberbullying, which comes with increased access to websites and technology. One popular website with children is Ask.fm, which allows people to post comments or questions about anyone anonymously.