Media technology

School Safety Seminar Focusing On The Dangers Of Social Media And Technology

To address the dangers of social media and technology facing young people inside and outside of schools, several regional and national organizations have teamed up to host the 17th annual Reboot Safe Schools Initiative seminar.

The free virtual event – titled “Tackling the Abuse, Overuse and Abuse of Social Media and Technology in Schools and Online Spaces” – is scheduled from 8:30 am to 3 pm on November 9 via Zoom. Registration is compulsory. Guests can register on the event website.

The one-day seminar, presented this year by the Erie County Law Enforcement Foundation, will help educators, law enforcement, first responders, youth professionals, school counselors , counselors, psychologists, college administrators, school board members and elected officials, as well as parents and guardians of school-aged children gain a better understanding – and get an action plan to do so. face – the dangers of digital technology affecting children and adolescents.

The annual event is a forum where thousands of professionals and parents concerned with school safety come together and learn about important topics related to protecting children and communities. This year’s seminar is a restart of the 2020 event, which was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Founding sponsors include the US Secret Service, Buffalo Field Office; UB’s Alberti Center for the Prevention of Bullying Abuse; the United States Attorney’s Office, Western New York District; and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, New York office. The program also received support from its seminar sponsor, Utica National Insurance Group.

“The Safe Schools Initiative annual seminar continues to provide an invaluable platform for the [Erie County Law Enforcement] Foundation to engage our multiple stakeholders to proactively respond to school safety issues, ”said Michael Bryant, chairman of the Erie County Law Enforcement Foundation and head of corporate safety at M&T Bank. Bryant is also a former Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Secret Service, Buffalo Field Office, and first hosted the Safe Schools Initiative Seminar in Western New York and hosted the event at UB.

“The dangers of social media abuse and technology addiction in our schools over the past year and a half have created serious, and at times dangerous, challenges for the mental health and development of our population from Kindergarten to Kindergarten. grade 12, ”he says.

The seminar will be led by nationally recognized leaders in promoting safe practices on social media and the internet, and managing mental health challenges arising from overuse of these platforms, particularly during the pandemic of COVID-19.

Presentations include:

  • “Responding to Social Media Abuse and Abuse Among Youth,” by Sameer Hinduja, professor in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Florida Atlantic University, Co-Director of the Cyberbullying Research Center and Associate Professor at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University. He is also co-founder and co-editor in chief of the International Journal of Bullying Prevention. Hinduja will share their research findings and come up with an action plan to tackle the main forms of technology misuse among young people today. The presentation will include specific and pragmatic initiatives for the school climate.
  • “’Recovery’ from mental health issues related to (persistence) of Covid due to virtual education isolation and other restrictions,” by Melissa Reeves, Nationally Certified School Psychologist, Mental Health Counselor Certified Clinic, Certified Special Education Teacher and Senior Consultant at SIGMA Threat Management Associates. She is also a former president of the National Association of School Psychologists. Reeves will discuss the impact of COVID-related mental health issues on academic achievement and socio-emotional functioning. Participants will learn the development indicators of these mental health challenges, as well as specific strategies for implementing proactive, universal and targeted approaches that address mental health needs related to COVID.
  • “Making the Internet a safer environment for our students: a presentation of Meta Trust and Safety Team ”, by Jennifer Hanley, North American Safety Officer, and Alexandra Hayman, Strategic Engagement Partner in the Trust and Safety Team, both at Meta. Hanley and Hayman will provide information on Facebook and Instagram tools and resources focused on student safety and education online. They will also discuss Meta approach to security, while sharing resources and tips for educators, law enforcement and others who play a role in the lives of young people.

“This timely seminar will address various forms of misuse and abuse of technology and social media in the lives of our youth, as well as other challenges COVID-19 has had on their mental health, academic success and their socio-emotional functioning, ”said Amanda Nickerson, director of the Alberti Center for Bullying Abuse Prevention and professor of counseling, school and educational psychology at the Graduate School of Education. “It is important to note that the three sessions of this year’s Safe Schools Initiative seminar will offer specific strategies and resources to address these issues in our schools, communities and online environments. “

For more information, visit the Erie County Law Enforcement Foundation website.


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