Council and schools launch #TellUs campaign
Posted on Wednesday 6th November 2019
The #TellUs campaign poster
A new campaign to encourage carers and parents of pupils to contact a school if there is a problem instead of turning to social media and using it as a bullying weapon is being launched by Newport City Council.
Using the #TellUs message the council hopes to encourage a more positive response among school communities.
Posters to highlight the #tellus campaign will be going up in schools and these will include the email address of the school concerned so parents and carers have a direct point of contact.
The council’s cabinet member for education and skills, Councillor Gail Giles, said that while there were many useful aspects of social media such as spreading good news about school activities and successes it could also be a force for spreading discontent.
Cllr Giles said: “We appreciate that the majority of people will report matters to school staff but our #TellUs campaign is reaching out to those who don’t do this to come and report it to the school first.
“It is very hurtful, and sometimes harmful, for head teachers and staff to discover there is a problem when the first they hear of it is via social media channels.
“This could mean a problem is escalated out of proportion and what happens then is it opens the flood gates for people, who have no knowledge of the problem or even of the people involved, to spread misinformation.
“It is then an uphill battle to stay positive in the face of such adverse comments.
“Schools want to know if there is a problem they can help with so they can hold discussions with all involved and try and solve problems amicably.”
The #TellUs campaign also wants to encourage the spread of good news and schools are welcoming the input of their local communities to pass on their ideas.
Nationally there are well documented tales where social media channels have been used to undermine individuals and groups and used as a weapon by bullies allowing little or no room for a target to redress the balance.
By law all schools must have an anti-bullying policy to reduce and prevent bullying.
Pupils are encouraged to tell their parents, carer or teacher if they are being bullied. There is advice on the council website visit http://www.newport.gov.uk/en/Schools-Education/Bullying.aspx