Hunter students to undertake new Life Education module designed to tackle cyber-bullying

HEALTHY HAROLD: Life Education has been teaching students about healthy lifestyle choices in NSW since 1979.
HEALTHY HAROLD: Life Education has been teaching students about healthy lifestyle choices in NSW since 1979.

School health education provider, Life Education, launched a new program on Wednesday aimed at tackling the rising problem of online bullying. 

The program, to be rolled out at the start of 2018 school year, comes following the death of 14-year-old Northern Territory girl Amy Everett.

Ms Everett had been subjected to both online and in-person bullying, and tragically took her own life on January 3. 

She had been the face of a marketing campaign for Australian hat company Akubra, at age six. 

Her death highlights the renewed concerns about cyber-bullying which prompted Life Education to create the new module - 'Relate, Respect, Connect'. 

The program will be aimed at children aged 10-13 and teach them how to construct safe and respectful relationships. 

“We must take a constructive approach to the problem rather than assigning blame,” Life Education spokesperson Kellie Sloane said. “Often, young people don’t see the link between their actions and consequences.

Statistics from the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute show one-in-three boys and one-in-four girls as young as eight and nine years old, are experiencing bullying on a weekly basis. 

Further, over 60 per cent of primary school students are now on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat.

“Across our community there is a need to promote tolerance and respect,” Ms Sloane said.

“There is more to cyber-bullying than just teaching children how to block the culprits.”

The new program will complement a cyber-safety module for children aged 8-10 ‘bCyberwise’ the organisation commenced in 2016. 

That module was their most sought after program in the past 12 months, reaching around 70,000 students across the country. 

Life Education has been teaching students about healthy lifestyle choices in NSW since 1979. 

In 2017, they delivered their health education program in the Hunter to 26,462 students across 48 preschools, 129 primary schools and four secondary schools.

  • To contact 24-hour service Lifeline – phone 13 11 14

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