What if our school does not allow use of wireless devices during the school day?
While many schools have moved to embrace student-use of wireless technology in the learning environment, there are still those that prohibit student-use of wireless devices or phones during class time. Even with limitations put on their use, however, many of these schools still allow for their use at lunch, between classes, and during extracurricular activities. Even when a student’s opportunity to report bullying or other school-safety related matters is limited, The BullyBøx allows for them to submit a report at their first available opportunity. Students literally possess the power to make a difference…rights in their hands. The BullyBøx makes reporting easy, at any time, from any place. Whether its between classes, at lunch, on the school bus, at practice, from friend’s house, or in the privacy of their own homes, students can submit reports in a manner that is most comfortable to them…on their wireless devices. With today’s students spending endlessly increasing amounts of time on their wireless devices, The BullyBøx serves as a platform with which they are comfortable interfacing.
Can The BullyBøx be used to report other school-safety issues (weapons on campus, fights, bomb threats, etc)?
Yes, indeed! While The BullyBøx, by name, is centered on the reporting of bullying-related behaviors, it was designed in a way that facilitates the reports of any school-safety issues. Whether its physical bullying, emotional bullying, or cyberbullying, The BullyBøx provides students a means by which to safely and anonymously report the incident(s). In the same manner, students have a safe and anonymous manner by which to report issues such as pre-planned fights, weapons on the school campus, drug dealing/use, or any other issues related to school safety. There exists no limits on the types of reports that can be submitted via The BullyBøx.
I would love to bring The BullyBøx to my school! However, budgets are tight…..any ideas?
Recently, MBS Studios has developed alternate forms of revenue, allowing us to offer a Free Version of The BullyBøx. While this version of The BullyBøx does not allow for the attachment of photos, or immediate key-word notification, your students will still have the ability to send unlimited reports regarding bullying or other school-safety concerns. As with the Pro Version, these reports will automatically be sent to the designated school administrator via email.
As it pertains to Pro Version, we have made every attempt to create a pricing model that makes The BullyBøx affordable for every school district, large or small. Still, we have been very impressed with some of the creative strategies that schools have used to offer The BullyBøx to their students. Some examples include: a very marginal increase to the student textbook/technology fees, reaching out to the PTO/PTA, or a combination of both. Parents tend to be very supportive of bringing the The BullyBøx to their children’s schools. Finally, we would recommend reaching out to your local business community, in solicitation of their “sponsorship” of The BullyBøx.
What is the Immediate Notification Feature?
When subscribing to The BullyBøx, the Immediate Notification feature is offered to every school, at no additional cost. Administrators can select key words such as: “gun”, “kill”, etc. Our servers will then analyze submitted reports for these “trigger words”. When such words are found to exist, the designated administrator will receive an auto-generated phone call (desktop or cell phone). The call will alert them to check their email for the report submitted via The BullyBøx, as well as informing them of the “trigger word(s)” that were included in the report.
What about false/fraudulent reports?
Anonymous reporting is the only reporting format that significantly reduces the risk of social stigma that so often attaches to student-reporters. Victims often legitimately fear that their situation will only worsen if their report becomes public knowledge. Likewise, many students will be less likely to serve as “up-standers” when they fear retaliation, or being labeled as a “snitch”. That being said, the possibility of receiving false/fictitious reports can never be completely eliminated. However, in most cases, false reports will quickly and easily be ferreted out by a minor administrative investigation.
The BullyBøx has several key features that work to guard against false reporting: First, reporters are asked to affirm that they are either a student or parent. Secondly, they are prompted to review their state’s definition of bullying, encouraging them to affirm that their reported incident meets the criteria set forth within that definition. Additionally, any profanity entered into any reporting field, with the exception of the “description” field, will be flagged as a false report. Most false reports will be quickly invalidated through the initial investigatory efforts made by administrators.
Finally, having a father that works in law enforcement, I can tell you that some of the most viable tips or reports received by law enforcement agencies are received from anonymous sources. Police agencies regularly follow-up or investigate anonymous tips.
Do administrators still need to investigate reports?
Most definitely! The BullyBøx is not intended, nor is it purported, to serve as a “cure-all” for all things related to bullying or other school-safety issues. Rather, The BullyBøx is intended to serve as a conduit of information, providing students with a “voice” to be heard. It is incumbent upon school administrators, or other designated personnel, to fully investigate every reported incident. Key players should be interviewed, in an attempt to determine the validity of the report, as well as the appropriate course of action to be taken. Most any false/fraudulent reports will be quickly invalidated during the initial investigatory process.
Can we use The BullyBøx for managing reports made by students, in person, or by paper and pen?
Absolutely. While we believe that The BullyBøx is a reporting format that speaks the “language” of today’s students (mobile technology), there will undoubtedly be occasions in which students will voice their complaints to a teacher or administrator, in person, or by pen and paper. In such cases, the designated administrator can simply enter the information into the data analysis web-tool, to be recorded, analyzed, and managed. The process works the same, regardless of which reporting format the student chooses to use.
What is the Data Analysis Web-Tool?
The data analysis web-tool is intended to serve as the only data management system that you will ever need for recording, analyzing, and managing bully-related incidents. Our web-tool will allow you to track real data such as: location, frequency, day, time, gender, grade level, etc. Such data will provide valuable insight into who is engaging in bullying behavior, as well as when and where. The web-tool also allows you to attach your investigate notes, as well as the final disposition to a reported incident. Summary reports can easily be created. By utilizing the data analysis web-tool, you will be better positioned to objectively review school policies and effectively allocate personnel resources, in an effort to minimize bullying-related behavior in your school building.
Will The BullyBøx create unnecessary work and/or reports for administrators?
Upon initially implementing The BullyBøx, schools may experience a slight increase in the number of reports generated. Newly acquired access to an anonymous reporting platform may provide students who have been suffering from the effects of bullying the impetus to report their problems. In addition, there will undoubtedly be a certain “novelty” associated with the introduction of any new software that is made available to students. However, over time, we fully expect that any short-term increase in reporting will level off. In the end, the workload placed on administrators is often significantly reduced, in large part due to the Data Analysis Web-Tool. Utilizing data analytics, administrators will have the tools necessary to review, modify, and improve upon strategies that will have a positive effect on the school environment.
What platform is The BullyBøx best suited for?
The BullyBøx is available on both iPhone and Android platforms. This includes phones, iPads, iPod Touch, and nearly all tablets. We are proud to say that this covers over 90% of the wireless market. However, for those students who may not have access to a wireless device, reports can still be submitted on any desktop computer that has internet capability. Reports can be submitted at www.bullyboxreport.com
What age/grade level is The BullyBøx best suited for?
Research tells us that physical bullying generally peaks in middle school, while verbal bullying tends to peak in high school. Whether the reports are related to bullying or any other school-safety issues, The BullyBøx will provide students a safe an anonymous method of reporting, regardless of their grade level. However, we feel that The BullyBøx is best suited for junior high and high school students. This is based upon the likelihood that students of these ages will have greater access to wireless devices.