Students sign pledge against bullying
WHATEVER stage of life you are in, bullying is detrimental to your health and there is no group more vulnerable than teenagers trying to find their place in the world.
Bullying is especially topical in regional communities and Australia in general since 14-year-old Dolly Everett took her own life earlier this year after being bullied online.
But the Whitsundays isn't immune either, just this week an 18-year-old Cannonvale man was slammed by the Magistrate in Proserpine court for his "bullying behaviour" (click here for story).
So Proserpine State High School decided to take a stand this week with events running the entire week.
On Tuesday, students and staff at wore pink, orange or purple shirts in support of the anti-bullying day.
During Care Group on Tuesday the students pledged their support to the cause by signing their names on a pink shirt sheet in an anti-bullying pledge and the student council ran activities to raise awareness during the second school break.
On Wednesday, Rachel Downie from Stymie, an anonymous online service which allows bystanders to send notifications to a school, spoke about what bystanders could do if they believed someone was being bullied or harmed.
The notification interface allows bystanders to upload evidence, like screen shots of FB discussions, Snapchats, text messages or instant message conversations and an outline of the incident(s).
The school receives the Stymie notifications in the form of an email alert.
To finish off the week on a high, at around 1pm today, students and teachers will shave and colour their hair for the World's Greatest Shave.
Proserpine State High School Don McDermid said tomorrow's national day against bullying was an opportunity to get young people involved in, not just an individual school's issue, but a huge issue in Australian society.
"It is important for our students to develop strategies to deal with bullying not only in schools but the work force, community and adult environment as well."
The week of action comes amid the Australian eSafety Commission data revealing in the past year there was a 30 per cent spike in complaints.
Online hate and cyber- bullying complaints from Queensland have come from the app Instagram rather than Facebook.
Instagram was responsible for 43 per cent of complaints, compared to Facebook's 27 per cent.
One in five young people still reported they had been the target of online bullying, while one in five of those reporting abuse to the commission were under 13.