Cyberbullying and students with disabilities

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Cyberbullying and students with disabilities

Guest Writer, Jenny Holt

According to stopbullying.gov, children and teenagers with disabilities are more likely to be bullied than other students. Due to the popularity of social media, cyberbullying has become a growing problem. Victims of cyberbullying often experience poor self-esteem, depression, and difficulty in school. Learn more about cyberbullying to discover how to recognize the warning signs and what you can do to stop it.

Recognizing Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying is a form of harassment that occurs on the internet via email, social media websites, and instant messaging applications. An isolated incident wouldn’t be considered cyberbullying, but multiple occurrences can be classified as harassment. According to cyberbully.org, cyberbullying includes sending unwanted messages and posting derogatory remarks about someone. Students often record incidents of bullying at school and post the video to their social media websites. It’s important for students to report incidents of cyberbullying to prevent future occurrences.

Effects of Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying has serious physical, emotional, and psychological effects on students with disabilities. Harassment causes bullied students to experience anxiety and depression. Students often withdrawal from social activities and spend most of their time alone. Some victims of bullying have committed suicide. Cyberbullying can affect a student’s attendance and performance at school. It’s common for young people to skip classes or drop out of school when they are bullied. Harassment makes it difficult for students to concentrate at school, pass state examinations, and maintain a satisfactory GPA.

Cyberbullying Legislation

Although cyberbullying has become a serious problem in our culture, no federal law exists to protect people from this kind of harassment. Many states have included cyberbullying in their legislation. Although cyberbullying occurs on the internet, teachers and schools can still be held accountable for resolving bullying problems. Schools are required to report, investigate, and correct aggressive behavior. Educational resources make it possible for some students to resolve cyberbullying incidents on their own. Although cyberbullying can have a negative effect on students, many parents don’t think it’s necessary to press criminal charges. Cyberbullying incidents can be resolved by the school system with suspension and detention.

Cyberbullying occurs when someone demonstrates aggressive and demeaning behavior towards another individual. The negative effects of cyberbullying include anxiety, depression, and poor performance at school. There are no federal laws for cyberbullying, but states have the option to include it in their legislation. Although schools can be held accountable for cyberbullying, it’s better for students to learn how to handle harassment on their own.

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