Students are often the first people to hear rumors – so why not ensure there’s a way for them to quickly and privately report any safety concerns? That’s the concept behind Lakota’s new “Text-A-Tip” program which will soon be launched.
According to Krysta Weizman, president of the District Parent Council, “The program is designed to protect our students by encouraging and providing the means for students to instantly and privately report tips to prevent school violence.”
“We’re pleased we can offer this option to our students, knowing that their quick sharing of information is a crucial component of prevention,” states Acting Superintendent Robb Vogelmann. “Students often hear rumors and, because we take the safety of our students as paramount, each and every report shared through this and other safety tip programs is always researched by our school resource officers and school or district administration.”
Working in collaboration with the Butler County Sheriff’s Department, the idea is to help students overcome the stigma that “telling is bad.” By offering an option to text 911, students better understand that reporting the concern is different from tattling.
Weizman adds, “Students can also report the information directly, if they so choose via a phone call, talking to a teacher, counselor or principal or contacting the school resource office. This new texting option is simply an additional channel for them, to ensure students have as many avenues as possible to share such important information. We want to make it easy and timely for students to share.”
As an added incentive, any student who reports information that leads to or helps resolve a situation and who chooses to share his or her name, will be given a small reward, similar to the popular “crime stoppers” programs. The incentives are being subsidized be the Lakota Parent Organizations.
Both high schools are producing and videotaping a skit to help share the message. To help provide context and foster discussion, counselors and resource officers will present the video to students district-wide.
For more on this program, please contact Krysta Weizman at email@example.com.