March 7, 2014
STOPit, a mobile app that allows students to anonymously report cyberbullying, has just signed up with seven schools in New Jersey and Florida to provide its platform. The app aims to reduce cyberbullying in schools and provide a safer, more secure environment in which both victims and bystanders may immediately alert the appropriate parties. In New Jersey, schools include Saint Denis School in addition to three schools in the Kenilworth school district. Three schools in the Somerset Academy Charter network in Jacksonville, FL are also included.
“The response we have received from schools around the country has been amazing,” stated Todd Schobel, president of STOPit. “It’s a testament to our approach and shows the dedication educators have for protecting our children. We look forward to working with the schools to implement their programs and stop cyberbullying.”
The STOPit mobile app is available for both schools and individuals. Packages for schools include educational workshops, public speaking events, posters, and another software application called DOCUMENTit. DOCUMENTit is a digital platform that allows school officials to collect all of the reports and collate the information. “DOCUMENTit is a dashboard to manage investigations. All reports funnel into DOCUMENTit, which includes the screen capture, username, date, and message,” said Schobel. Individuals may also download the app and submit information to school officials even if their school has not enrolled in the program.
“It is a comfortable platform to report cyberbullying. Students can capture the evidence and send it to trusted adults such as the principal or school cyberbullying expert,” he explained. The app allows users to instantly take screenshots of inappropriate cyberbullying content on social media Websites such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter and anonymously send a message to school authorities. Users can also use the app’s “HELPit” button to connect with a qualified counselor to discuss concerns.
“As we hear so often in the news, it’s unfortunate that at times technology is used to inflict pain upon others,” says Father Ed Blanchett, pastor, Saint Denis School. “It is truly inspiring to have a tool that, as quickly as digital means can be used for harm, this can be put to use for good: bringing loving support and encouragement at exactly the time it is most needed.”
“It is an application that empowers the future to make a difference today,” said Schobel.