National Bullying Prevention Month 2017

New at 10: It’s National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month, and a Connecticut school superintendent is trying to shed light on
a new bullying trend. It’s taking place across social media. Fox 61’s Jenna D’Angelis is here to explain. Katie & Lorenzo: This all started in the middle of last week when a Burlington parent jumped onto a school bus to confront students bullying their child. It turns out the student was the victim of
a so-called “game” spreading quickly on-line. So the school superintendent sent this email out to urge parents to have an important talk with their kids. A month into the school year and a new trend is lurking in the halls. It’s called “roasting.” “Kim Jong Un didn’t even score that low.” Roasts have been seen across TV screens between celebrities. They are meant to be good-natured jokes as entertainment. But recently it’s been brought to the attention of the Region 10 public school superintendent that it’s happening between students. Last week, he sent a letter home to parents alerting them the the social media trend called “roasting,” sending a video to parents describing the game. A kid posts a picture on Instagram, Facebook or some form of social media, asking to be insulted with the hashtag #roastme. “It’s honestly very disturbing.” Child psychologist Dr. Laura Saunders says this is a new form of cyberbullying. “It allows people to be insulting in a way
that they would never be face-to-face.” While kids may see this as harmless, it can
actually do a lot of harm, especially for adolescents. “They’re going through a lot of changes socially,
emotionally, mentally. So to subject themselves to being insulted
is inevitably going to hit a nerve. Someone’s going to say the one thing that
would be a trigger for that individual. It’s really a set-up for disaster.” She’s urging that you supervise your child’s
use of social media and monitor their behaviors. “Check in with them when you see any changes,
they seem to be more depressed, more angry, more irritable.” And even if it’s not happening to your kids,
with something new like this, she says it’s important to nip it in the bud. “To really talk about how dangerous it can
be. While it seems like a few roasting insults
might not be very significant, kids take these very deeply personally.” And again this all started with a parent getting
on a school bus, so it’s important to note that the superintendent of Region 10 schools
also addressed that issue, saying, “It is our continued practice not to allow unauthorized
individuals onto the Region 10 school buses and to ensure children are kept safe to and
from school.” Jenna D’Angelis, Fox 61 News