What's in the News?

These news articles are provided for your information only. Their inclusion in this listing should not be considered an endorsement by the BC Centre for Safe Schools and Communities. While we've made an effort to review the content of each of the sites on this list, we cannot guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of the information they contain.

News Archives

Facebook launches Be Bold anti-bullying campaign
Facebook has created an interactive page for teens and adults where they can pledge to stop bullying and recruit others to get involved. Click here for the article.  

B.C. launches online bullying reporting tool
B.C. hopes to "erase bullying" with the launch of a new strategy and online reporting tool. Clickhere for the article.

An Effective Collaborative Practice to Promote Student Safety
Learn more about how Nanaimo-Ladysmith School District (68) is modeling a promising practice through TnT by demonstrating how students, families, educators, technology providers and community agencies are working together to harness the positive power of social media. Click here

MediaSmarts launches lesson on playing with privacy
MediaSmarts's new lesson Playing With Privacy helps students to consider how video games gather information about them and teaches them tools to control their personal privacy. Click here

Cyberbullying-linked suicides rising, study says
Cases of suicides linked to cyberbullying have grown over the past decade, but being tormented over the internet is rarely the main factor involved, a new Canadian study shows. Click here for article

In wake of Amanda Todd suicide, MPs to debate anti-bullying motion

As Canadians debate the right response to a case of cyber bullying that may have pushed B.C. teenager Amanda Todd to take her own life, lawmakers will consider a motion that seeks to lay the groundwork for a national bullying prevention strategy in the House of Commons Monday. Click here for article                 


Supreme Court to rule on Facebook cyberbullying case
A teenage girl who says she was a victim of cyberbullying will find out Thursday whether she’ll be able to keep her name and what was written about her on a fake Facebook profile out of the public eye. Article   

Why are 5 million kids on Facebook if it doesn't want them
An estimated 5.6 million Facebook clients - about 3.5 percent of its U.S. users - are children who the company says are banned from the site. Click here for article

Keeping Safe Online: CIRA and MediaSmarts release latest Cyber Security tip sheet  
CIRA and MediaSmarts have partnered on a series of five tip sheets to educate Canadians about online security issues. The 5th tip sheet in the series, Socializing and Interacting Online, looks at negative issues that can come up when interacting with others through networked technologies including phishing scams and hoaxes, and strategies for dealing with them. Click here for article

Winnipeg school makes laptops a classroom must-have
Some students at a Winnipeg high school are now being required to use laptop computers in the classroom, but not all parents are sold on the idea. Click here for article

New study again links ‘sexting’ with risky sexual behaviour in teenagers
While research is still needed to figure out if teens are first having sex, or sending sexually explicit text messages, a new U.S. study has linked sending the photos to being sexually active.Click here for article 

Taking Students Where No School Bus Can Go
Skype connects Virginia elementary students live with research scientists around the world. Click here for article


Studies Find More Students Cheating, With High Achievers No Exception

Experts say the reasons are relatively simple: Cheating has become easier and more widely tolerated, and both schools and parents have failed to give students strong, repetitive messages about what is allowed and what is prohibited. Click here for article

How Instagram became the social network for tweens

Well-intentioned parents who've kept their tweens off Facebook are catching on to the workaround: kids are turning to Instagram, the photo-sharing app that may as well be a social network. Click here for article

Who you gonna call? Elmo
A new app that lets parents turn to the Sesame Street character for help is raising questions. Click here for article

Concern about technology use as kids head back to school

As students head back to school with the latest tablets, laptops and smartphones in their knapsacks, some parents worry the abundance of gadgets in their children's lives could be affecting their grades and health. Click here for article

One in 10 Canadian children falling prey to cyberbullying, according to their parents

Ten per cent of Canadian parents believe their children have fallen victim to cyberbullying, according to an Angus Reid survey done recently for the Mayo Clinic. Click here for article

Facebook envy prompting tweens to lie about age online

Before going back to school next week, many kids under the age of 13 are facing an ethical dilemma: with seemingly everyone in the world on Facebook, should they lie about their age in order to get their own account on the popular site? According to the latest Consumer Report, six million preteens in the U.S. alone currently have Facebook accounts under false pretenses. Click here for article

Study Finds Youth-Oriented TV Networks Most Gay & Lesbian Inclusive

Yesterday GLAAD released its sixth annual Network Responsibility Index (NRI), a report that maps the quantity, quality and diversity of images of LGBT people on television. Youth-oriented networks like CW and ABC Family continue to make up the highest percentage of inclusive air time along with cable station likes HBO and Showtime. Click here for article

Police embrace social media as crime-fighting tool

Leveraging Facebook is just one of many ways law enforcement officials are gleaning evidence from social media to help them solve crimes. Click here for article

Grant Lets Kids With Disabilities Become Gamers With Adaptive Technology

Learning a new videogame can be frustrating. But for kids with disabilities, the experience can be especially hard. Now the AbleGamers Foundation, long dedicated to bring greater accessibility in the digital entertainment space for people of all ages, has launched the AbleGamers 2012 Children’s Grant Program, a one-time grant that provides gaming equipment for children 15 years or younger. Click here for article

Parents: Do Your Kids Use Their Mobile Devices to Cheat at School?
According to McAfee’s 2012 Teen Internet Behavior Study, only 23% of parents expressed concern about their teen cheated in school by going online, yet nearly half of all teens (48%) admit they’ve looked up answers to a test or assignment online. Click here for article

How Alcohol Ads Target Kids  
Parents might do their best to shield their kids from advertising related to alcohol, but alcohol marketers are doing their best to reach them anyway. That's the finding of new research that discovered that the content of alcohol ads placed in magazines is more likely to violate industry guidelines if the ad appears in a magazine with sizable youth readership. Click here for article

New report shows girls in Ontario more likely to be bullied in school and online
A report from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health has found girls in Ontario are nearly twice as likely to be victims of cyber-bullying than boys. Click here for information

Why 6-year-old girls want to be sexy
Most girls as young as 6 are already beginning to think of themselves as sex objects, according to a new study of elementary school-age kids in the Midwest. Click here for article

18 Percent of Teens Would Stop Communicating Altogether if their Favorite Networks Shut Down
A recent survey of American high school and college students revealed that few teens would revert to landlines, letters, or even talking, if social media went away. From the mouths of our future leaders, here are some surprising statistics on communication in the modern world. Click here for article

Media violence a risk factor for bullying
Knowing students' risks for aggression can help schools determine which students may be more likely to get in fights or bully others, U.S. researchers say. Click here for article

Facebook fuses emotion to its anti-bullying efforts
To make it easier to catch and resolve volatile situations early on, Facebook is changing how content is reported, the company announced Wednesday. It's giving users tools to better communicate their feelings and handle conflicts themselves. The changes are the result of collaborations with Yale, Columbia and Berkeley that involved months of research and focus groups with kids, teachers and clinical psychologists. Click here for article

Too Much TV Linked with Thicker, Weaker Kids
Researchers link increases in waist size and less powerful leg-muscle strength to TV watching in kids. Click here for article

Premier Christy Clark announced a new province-wide 10-point anti-bullying strategy in Surrey, BC that will help ensure every child feels safe, accepted and respected, regardless of their gender, race, culture, religion, or sexual orientation. Click here for article

Disney's Club Penguin to invest in child safety online
Disney, the firm behind social network Club Penguin, is donating £3m worth of space on its outlets towards teaching children how to stay safe online. Click here for article

80 percent of 10-year-olds have been on a diet - and young girls' number one wish is to be thinner
New campaign that aims to empower teenagers from today's image and weight obsessed society has revealed that the number one wish for 11 to 17-year-old girls is to be thinner. Click here for article

AI systems could fight cyberbullying
Smart software could detect online bullying via a database system that can identify even the subtlest of abusive comments. Click here for article

Half of the world's kids fear online bullying, report says
According to data collected by Microsoft's Safety & Security Center, 54% of kids worldwide say they worry about being bullied online, and nearly 1 in 4 say they have experienced online bullying. Click here for article.

Beyond the "Sex Talk" -- explaining Photoshop to tweens
Concerned that the perfect images of celebrities we see every day are affecting kids' self-esteem, the Brits are fighting back. As part of a Body Confidence campaign, the government is urging parents to teach their kids about altered images. Click here for article

Sooke Shows Vast Improvements in Aboriginal Students Graduation Rate
In Sooke, over 80 Aboriginal students are on track to receive a high school diploma this year, 30 more than in 2011. Even in 2011, Sooke’s graduation rate was 73%, 20% above the provincial average. While these statistics are impressive on their own, they become even more impressive when one considers that four years ago, their rate was 38%. The jump in graduation is credited to Sooke’s dedication to improvement through methods such as increasing the number of Aboriginal teachers and improving relations with First Nations Chiefs and communities. Read more about this in the Victoria Times Colonist.

Federal Cuts to Programs for Aboriginal Youth
A news release from Women Against Violence Against Women states that 100% of the funding for their Aboriginal Youth Outreach Program was eliminated by the federal Treasury Board. A news release from the Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Executive Council states that the Cultural Connections for Aboriginal Youth funding in the Department of Aboriginal Affairs has been eliminated, resulting in a total cut of $22 million in funding: You can support Aboriginal youth by letting your MP, the Prime Minister, the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Minister of Finance know that this is withdrawal of support is short-sighted and unacceptable – find your MP’s e-mail address here.

Release of “Families Matter: A Framework for Family Mental Health in British Columbia”
The F.O.R.C.E. Society, Families Organized for Recognition and Care Equality, recently released Families Matter: A Framework for Family Mental Health in British Columbia. An excerpt from the Framework explains what the report covers, and its purpose. The complete Framework can be found on F.O.R.C.E.’s website. They are also asking for feedback on the Framework – fill out the online form here.

Verifying Ages Online Is a Daunting Task, Even for Experts
Despite attempts by privacy advocates, academics, law enforcement officials, technologists and advertisers to determine a person’s age on the Internet, the reality is that, online, it is extremely difficult to tell whether someone is an 11-year-old girl or a 45-year-old man. Click here for article

Teens on alert about social media after luring case
Ottawa teens say the recent news of girls allegedly being lured into prostitution through social media has made them more aware of who they communicate with and how. MediaSmarts's Matthew Johnson comments. Click here for article

New Findings from Young Canadians in a Wired World Study: Children Live in Fishbowl Created by Fear and Surveillance, Anti-Cyberbullying Programs Ineffective
A new Canadian report highlights a dramatic shift in views toward the Internet, and a remarkable dichotomy between children and parents. The report, titled "Talking to Youth and Parents about Life Online", is part of an ongoing study - Young Canadians in a Wired World. It is the most comprehensive investigation into the role of the Internet in the lives of Canadian children. Click here for article 

Effects of Integrating Bullying Prevention into School-wide PBS 

Is Facebook Stunting Your Child’s Growth?
A sociologist says social media damages tweens’ emotional intelligence – with potentially serious consequences. Click here for article

Kids aware of online risks
When a strange man in his 30s messaged Natasha Iskayne on Facebook asking for her phone number, she knew how to react. “I just ignored him, but then when he persists and harasses me, I just decided to block him,” said Iskayne, 16. The Grade 10 Omer-Deslauriers high school student was one of three youth on a panel at the launch of a new study, Young Canadians in a Wired World. Click here for article.

New study examines print vs. eBooks for kids
As the popularity of digital book reading continues to grow, especially with younger ages, The Joan Ganz Cooney Center has conducted a new study that explores the differences in the way parents and their preschool-age children (three to six) interact when reading print books, basic eBooks and enhanced eBooks together. Click here for article.

Wasting Time Is New Divide in Digital Era
As access to digital devices has spread, children in poorer families are spending considerably more time than children from more well-off families using their television and gadgets to watch shows and videos, play games and connect on social networking sites, studies show. Click here for article.

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