On Oct. 16, 2014, Ladue Horton Watkins High School Students teamed up with students from seven other area high schools to participate in the Clothes Pin Challenge a student-led campaign to stop cyberbullying. They wrote #StartsWithUs on a clothes pin and “pinned” the backpack or shirt of a friend, taking a photo or video of the “pinning” and uploading it to Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc. In turn, the “pinned friend” goes on to pin someone else.
Read the full news release from CharacterPlus…
ST. LOUIS – Oct. 16, 2014 – CharacterPlus (a resource of EducationPlus™) has teamed up with the St. Louis Rams and Fox2/KPLR11 to launch a student-led campaign to stop cyberbullying, which is bullying on the internet and social media, including spreading rumors, posting mean comments about others, manipulating a person’s photo, threatening harm or violence, etc. (For information visit www.characterplus.org)
“Character Goes Viral: Students Stop Cyber bullying” started at the CharacterPlus Student Summit when 80 students from regional high schools* met and collaborated on the campaign. They created the hashtag #StartsWithUs to use on social media and spread the message: Stop cyberbullying and be kind to each other.
The problem is widespread. More than half of all adolescents have been targets of cyberbullying, and about the same number have engaged in cyberbullying, according to the i-SAFE foundation.
“CharacterPlus has successfully helped to reduce bullying in schools by working with educators to create a school culture where students respect and understand each other,” said Diane Kline, executive director of CharacterPlus. “In today’s on-line world, addressing cyberbullying is critical to keeping students safe and focused on schoolwork.”
To help the hashtag go viral, students are taking “The Clothes Pin Challenge.” They write #StartsWithUs on a clothes pin and “pin” it on a backpack or shirt of a friend. A photo or video of the “pinning” will be uploaded on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc., and everyone who gets “pinned” then passes the message along by “pinning” a friend.
Chris Long, defensive end for the St. Louis Rams, is the campaign spokesperson, and will be tweeting on October 16 via the St. Louis Rams profile @stlouisrams. “I’m excited to lend my voice and social media presence to help raise awareness about cyberbullying, which has become a significant issue especially related to our youth,” said Long. “As a big user of social media, I have experienced firsthand the benefits and negatives associated with it. Through this campaign, our hope is that we can get people to think about using social media as a way to spread positive messages, while eliminating cyberbullying. It will be fun to see how far reaching the #StartsWithUs movement can become and the impact it can have.”
For students, educators and parents, there will be resources on how to prevent and respond to cyberbullying posted on the CharacterPlus website at www.characterplus.org.
Also, CharacterPlus is presenting a special workshop for educators and parents with national expert Sameer Hinduja, co-director of the Cyberbullying Research Center and author of “School Climate 2.0: Preventing Cyberbullying and Sexting One Classroom at a Time.” It takes place from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Monday, October 20 at the Fox Service Center (Fox School District) 849 Jeffco Blvd., Arnold, MO 63010. The workshop is free for anyone in school districts that are members of CharacterPlus. For non-members the cost is $100.
*High Schools at the “Character Goes Viral” Student Summit
Bayless High School (Bayless School District); Belleville East High School (Belleville Township 201); Belleville West High School (Belleville Township 201); Fox Senior High School (Fox School District); Ladue Horton Watkins High School (Ladue School District); Lafayette High School (Rockwood School District); Lindbergh High School (Lindbergh Schools);Mehlville High School (Mehlville School District)
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