Our mission was to help schools respond quickly and wisely to problems in social media involving students – since doing so is increasingly key to school safety and positive school climates. So if a problem like online harassment, cyberbullying, impersonation, etc. was brought to a member of school or district staff, they could call or email for our help with that content.
[The caveat always: You know this but, just to be clear, if it’s an emergency – if someone’s physical safety is being threatened or nude images of a student have been posted in social media – call law enforcement first. We are happy to help them and you with the social media part. So if the issue was not an emergency…]
Here’s what we asked school personnel to do when a problem arose….
Before you contact us:
- “Report abuse” first in the app or service, if possible: It can help speed things up if you do this before calling or emailing us. When a social media incident is brought to your attention, ask the student or parent if the content has been reported through the app’s regular reporting system. If it hasn’t, please report it yourself or, ideally, work with the student or a student leader at your school to do so (very often students, who themselves are frustrated with drama and negativity, really want to help). If that’s not possible and this is why you’re contacting us, we’re happy to help. Just call (855.997.0409).
- Evidence needed: If the content has been reported with no results, ideally also before you call, obtain evidence of the problem – just a screenshot or link to (Web address of) the abusive page, post, tweet, text, etc. Having that in advance really helps speed things up.
When you contact us:
- Call or email: toll-free at __________ or via email:__________
- Give us some basic info: No matter what the problem is (including if you just need help with reporting content or understanding an app), we need your name, the name of your school or district and your role there. We also need your email address and phone number plus extension (your phone ext. is important, if you have one) so we can get back to you quickly.
- Tell us about the case: Just the basics in your email or phone message – the nature of the problem and the app or platform involved. Email us the evidence (screenshots or links) via ___@_______ – leave your name, school name and helpline subscriber number in every email or phone message about the case.
- We aim to respond right away in every case, definitely within 24 hours.
About students’ privacy