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Montgomery County Officials Create Guide To Assist Schools, Parents With Cyber-Bullying

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(credit: CBS) Jenn Bernstein
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NORRISTOWN, Pa. (CBS) – Montgomery County officials announced the creation of a guide that offers advice and suggestions on how parents and schools can handle cyber-bullying situations.

Arlandra Wayne is going into her senior year at Norristown High School. She’s seen bullying first-hand.

“I see more so cyber-bullying this school year, that seems to be the new thing now,” said Wayne.

In this day and age of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram information is immediate and very public.

“All the followers, everybody from school and family members, anybody can see it,” said Wayne.

So what’s the best way for schools and parents to handle it?

Montgomery County officials say the answers are in a manual they created.

It was the result of the county’s Cyber-Bullying and Bullying Task Force which included representatives from the District Attorney’s Office, schools and law enforcement.

“Many times the acts don’t rise to a level of criminal activity but they still need to be dealt with because kids’ lives are being impacted in a very negative way,” said Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman.

The manual includes tips for students, parents and teachers. It even suggests reporting tools for schools.

“It is an incredible gift to all of us and we look forward to the manual used in many ways,” said Norristown School District Superintendent Dr. Janet Samuels.

“Anything like this that’s comprehensive, that gives resources is wonderful because then we have somewhere to go,” said Karen Addison-Williams, a parent of two high school age boys.

Wayne thinks this new tool will be useful for many.

“I think that’s a great idea,” said Wayne, “especially for those that don’t know how, or where to start.”

It’s important to note that this guide is not a mandate for schools; it holds advice and suggestions about bullying and cyber-bullying. Every district has its own policies in place.

A copy is available through e-mail. Write to montcobullyingtaskforce@gmail.com.

Officials say the manual will bounce back to your e-mail address.

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