November 15, 2018
(ABC 6 News) — The goal is to get students to stand up against inappropriate, or unsafe behavior.
And students in the Grand Meadow school district now have an easier way to do it.
“We want our students and staff to feel safe here at school, so safety is paramount in everything we do” Grand Meadow high school/middle school principal Jake Schwarz said.
STOPit is an app that lets students share problems and concerns with school administrators in a private, confidential way using their electronic devices.
“And we think it’s just a great tool for students to talk to people if they have problems because it’s not easy all the time to come to a teacher or to come to an adult with a problem that may be concerning and needs to be reported, and this is a nice way for students to be able to do that” Jake Schwarz said.
The app was rolled out about a week ago, and it IS being used.
“No real threats,” principal Jake Schwarz said. “But again just things we were not aware of and we probably wouldn’t have been aware of unless we were using the STOPit app.”
“And it’s important to know that like it’s anonymous and like they won’t know who it is” Grand Meadow high school junior Isabelle Olson said. “They don’t always want to be the one that tells on a friend.”
“The STOPit app is an anti-bullying app, but it’s more than just an anti-bullying app,” GMHS junior Mariah Weiss said. “People can come forward if they see one of their friends or a classmate feeling down and they’re worried about them.”
“And it’s like really important for us as students to be able to know we are able to talk to administrators” junior Isabelle Olson added.
“It kind of feels empowering to know that even though you’re not comfortable saying hey, I’m the person that needs help or I’m the person that knows what’s going on you still can take a step to do what’s right,” Grand Meadow schools counselor and social worker Kira Wellner said.
The Southeast Minnesota Education Consortium will pay for “STOPit” for all 7 of its member schools … Alden/Conger, Glenville/Emmons, Kingsland, Leroy, Lyle, Southland and Grand Meadow.