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This week’s safe schools snippets

7 things you need to know to keep kids safe online

In the past ten years, the amount of time our kids spend online daily has tripled; online screen time has become a regular part of even our younger kids’ lives. (Four in ten  2- to 4-year olds and half of 5- to 8-year-olds now use smartphones, video iPods or iPads). Though there are clear benefits, the Internet also poses unique parenting challenges. Fortunately, there are clues that help us monitor our cyber-kids. These seven tips will help you know what to look and listen for – and  keep them safer online. Read more from TODAY Moms.

Bullying: Resources for how to get help

Millions of kids are relentlessly demeaned and physically attacked at school every day. Parents of victims and educators say that a change must take place and everyone can help. Below is a list of resources to help stop bullying and cyberbullying. Read more from ABC News.

Rice, Klein: Education keeps America safe

The United States is an exceptional nation. As a people, we are not bound by blood, nationality, ethnicity or religion. Instead, we are connected by the core belief that it does not matter where you came from; it matters only where you are going. This belief is what makes our country unique. It is also what makes education critically important, more so today than ever. Read more from CNN.

Obama introduces bullying documentary on Cartoon Network


President Obama opened up a 30-minute documentary on childhood bullying for Cartoon Network this evening, continuing awareness initiatives he set into motion last year.

The minute-long introduction, which was pre-taped, featured the president speaking directly to the camera for the documentary titled “Speak Up,”  a 30-minute special broadcast that aired Sunday on Cartoon Network.

“Bullying is not a rite of passage or harmless part of growing up,” Obama said. “It’s wrong. Its destructive and we can all prevent it.” Read more from ABC News.

Bullying minimized in 10-year-old’s suicide

More than four months after 10-year-old Ashlynn Conner was found hanging from a scarf in her closet, authorities in downstate Ridge Farm on Monday ruled the fifth-grader’s death a suicide but minimized bullying as the reason the girl took her own life.

In the days after Ashlynn’s death, her family told police and reporters that the girl had struggled with name-calling by peers for more than a year leading up to her death. Read more from the Chicago Tribune.

At UT Arlington, Obama administration officials stress zero tolerance for bullying at LGBT conference

ARLINGTON — Joshua Little was too young in middle school to understand much about his sexuality, and name-calling by some of his classmates only confused him more.

“People would call me ‘gay,'” said Little, who didn’t know what the word meant. “I was like, ‘I don’t know. Why are you calling me this?'” Read more from the Star-Telegram.

About our First Person series:

First Person is where Chalkbeat features personal essays by educators, students, parents, and others trying to improve public education. Read our submission guidelines here.