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Posted: 04/17/13

Online link allows middle-
schoolers to report bullying

Observer Special Writer
      The Romeo Middle School is trying out something new in an effort to thwart bullies.
       Assistant Principal Paul Essian said an online recording system was developed over the summer as a pilot program for the middle school to try out.
       A Bullying Information and Form link is provided on the school's web page that can be accessed by students or parents for information about bullying and, if needed, to submit a bullying incident.
       Essian said this allows students who typically wouldn't be vocal about the bullying the opportunity to go online and address whatever the issue is.
       "It lets us know what's happening and makes sure I'm aware of what's going on so I can address the issue," he said.
       The link also provides useful information about bullying, such as the characteristics of bullying, how to address it, and the steps students can take to report it.
       A bullied student isn't the only one who can submit the issue, friends or parents can as well. Essian said at the beginning of the school year a police officer submitted a form about an incident that happened outside of the school. Essian said he was then able to seek out the student, set them up with counseling and gave them ideas about handling the bully.
       Essian said it was that issue that made this online recording system worthwhile.
       "It just gives kids another avenue to get their voices heard and take the pressure off going face to face," he said.
       On average, Essian said he gets anywhere from two to three reports per month. Not all are necessarily major things, sometimes the student just wants to get something off their mind. Or in some cases, it's a student writing in to report a bullying incident that happened to their friend.
       The online anonymous bullying reporting form can be found at

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