Several times, Franco says that she has seen actual fights on campus tat started over social media posts online.
There are big consequences for actions taken on social media sites at schools in VIsalia and Tulare California. Some of those include physical fights, expulsions and suspensions.
The problems with social media bullying come at a time when schools are putting personal computing devices in the hands of every student, and children as young as first grade use smartphones. There are social complications with instant connectivity.
Visalia and Tulare school officials find themselves getting creative as they look for ways to prevent online bullying and other forms of online exploitation. And each school and district has its own take on how to tackle the problems.
Principal Greg Anderson of Tulare’s Cherry Avenue Middle School said since the rise of technology, he sees incidents linked to the Internet and social media on his campus about once or twice a month.
From what Anderson has seen, he says there is one constant component fueling social media-related issues on campuses.
“Facebook, Facebook and Facebook,” he said. “Oh my gosh, yeah. In my estimation, many students aren’t ready for the freedom and responsibilities that Facebook offers. They get pretty brave behind the computer screen and it causes more trouble than they realize.”
Officer Matt Jones oversees campus safety at Golden West High School.
At the campus, Jones said a social media-fueled incident has never exploded into criminal charges against a student, but social media sites are still a regular cause of conflict.
“Cyberbullying by defintion of the ed code — in terms of somebody causing somebody hate or discontent through social media — yes, it is a problem,” Jones said.