Saturday, December 24, 2011
Tulsa Public Schools will have another tool, starting in January, to combat bullying and make school safer for kids.
The district will launch an online reporting system that will allow students, teachers and others to report bullying and other potentially harmful incidents.
“We know that learning and high student achievement is only going to be accomplished in an environment that is safe for our students,” Superintendent Keith Ballard said. “Our teachers and staff are ever vigilant, but you can’t prevent situations you don’t know about.”
The district purchased the Threat Assessment, Incident Management and Prevention Services – or TIPS – software with a $22,000 grant provided by a private donor group. It was developed by web-based services firm Awareity of Lincoln, Neb.
TIPS will alert educators to potential problems inside or outside schools, Ballard said.
“Then we can be proactive and intervene appropriately, whether it’s suspected bullying, harassment or fear that a student might take their own life,” he said. “We care deeply about providing the safest possible environment for our children.”
The system will be accessible from the Tulsa Public Schools website. Users will easily be able to identify the school, type of incident, date and time, identities of those being reported and any victims or potential victims, and a description of the incident.
Reports can be made confidentially.
Designated teams at each school and the district office will automatically be notified of each report that is filed. The teams will be made up of school counselors, the principal, other school administrators, Tulsa police officers and others.
The system will allow team members to create a record of recommendations and actions taken, to keep track of which members view and add to the record, and to notify members of new information.
It will also allow staff members to set up automatic reminders of when it is time to check in with a student who was recently victimized or to follow up on other incidents.
The type of incidents that could be reported include bullying, weapons possession, drug or alcohol use, harassment or intimidation, school vandalism, physical assault, threats of violence, suicide risk, and abuse or neglect.
“Given the size of the Tulsa metro area and the number of neighboring school districts, there is the potential for some of this reporting activity to cross school boundaries,” said Rick Shaw, president and CEO of Awareity.
“We are hopeful that other districts will come on board so we can have the strongest impact possible on making Tulsa schools even safer than they are today.”
For more information
For more information about the TIPS program, go online to tulsaworld.com/tps To view the district’s harassment, intimidation and bullying policy, go to the website, click on the administration tab and select policies. In the search box, enter 2119, and the full policy will be displayed.
Original Print Headline: TPS system to facilitate reporting of bullying
Kim Archer 918-581-8315