SARASOTA, FL – In recognition of October as National Cybersecurity and National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month, Goldie Feldman Academy invites parents and their children ages 11-16 to the seminar, “Who is Chatting with Your Children? When Social Media Isn’t Sociable” to learn about online threats and how to protect their families. Experts from law enforcement and the Child Protection Center will present crucial information about cybersecurity and online bullying. Takes place on Sunday, October 18 from 12:30-2:30pm at GFA (1050 S. Tuttle Ave., Sarasota).
Lt. Timothy Enos of the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office, Special Operations Bureau, Youth Services Section, will lead a targeted program for parents. Andrea Medred, a prevention educator from the Child Protection Center, will lead an age-appropriate program for children.
The statistics on cyberbullying – bullying that takes place using electronic technology and communications tools such as social media sites and text messages – are sobering. According to DoSomething.org:
• Nearly 43% of kids have been bullied online; 25% of those children had it happen more than once;
• 70% of students report seeing frequent bullying online;
• 68% of teens agree that cyberbullying is a serious problem; and
• 81% of young people think bullying online is easier to get away with than bullying in person.
The problem can affect children deeply – and lastingly. According to StopBullying.gov, children who are cyberbullied are more likely to use drugs and alcohol, skip school, receive lower grades, have lower self-esteem and have more health problems.
Lt. Enos will talk to parents about social media’s impact on young people, discussing the newest apps out there, where kids go and what they do online (and how they might get in trouble), and offer tips for parents on keeping their kids safe. Medred will address the dangers and permanence of online behavior, discuss positive ways to use technology, and encourage the young attendees to have empathy when it comes to cyberbullying, among other topics.
“At Goldie Feldman Academy, we are committed to educating the whole child while equipping them with 21st century skills. We have a 1:1 Chromebook Program in seventh and eighth grade – but we can only protect our kids from external digital threats while they’re on campus,” said GFA Head of Schools Dan Ceaser. “In this day and age, it’s crucial we prepare young people for the dangers that are out there while also reminding them of the importance of being kind and respectful to one another, both in person and online. Parents who attend will find themselves better equipped to communicate effectively with their kids and protect the home front. We encourage all families concerned with these issues to join us for what should be an eye-opening program.”
This event is free and open to the public; advance registration is required. Pizza lunch provided; childcare available for younger children if requested at time of registration. To register, email Melissa Rivera at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (941) 552-2770.
About Goldie Feldman Academy:
Goldie Feldman Academy (GFA), which serves students in preschool through eighth grade, is a Hershorin Schiff Community School. The mission of GFA is to prepare students of all faiths to impact the world through academic excellence, global citizenship and compassionate action. GFA offers a rigorous, project-based academic program in a diverse and vibrant learning environment rooted in the Jewish values of honesty, integrity, mutual trust and respect. For more information, visit the website at gfasarasota.org or call (941) 552-2770.