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Escambia County launches new anti-bullying initiative

ESCAMBIA COUNTY    --  Escambia County has launched an Anti-Bullying Initiative to prevent something like that from happening here.

It's as easy as the click of a button; students, parents, staff, anyone can submit a tip online letting the staff know bullying is going on.

Here's an email I just received.
When it comes to preventing bullying, Ken Myers is the man to know at the Escambia County School District.   He receives 1 to 2 tips a day.

This one says its been four instances, so it's ongoing, so this is something that's really going to have to be looked at..

He reads each and every tip that comes in through anonymous reporting website.  Then an investigation immediately begins...

We've had them for middle school, high school, elementary, students, parents report, concerned citizen, even school staff because if you put it on here, there will be a lot of follow up.

Many of the tips don't meet the definition for bullying, but they do help stop something before it gets worse.  Meyers says the few bullying cases they have seen have been traumatizing for the victim.

One case we dealt with was a child with a disability, a lot of it is boyfriend, girlfriend, a lot of times new girlfriend will try to get old boyfriend, make it worse for the victim.
Police in South Florida say it was  intense bullying like this over a boy that led  a 12 year old to kill her self last month.   The two alleged bullies were arrested this morning.  
Cases like this are why local schools are doing everything from talks, poster contests, to training staff to make sure bullying is taken seriously.
Renne Booey has two little ones. They aren't in school yet, but she does worry about how they are treated by others.

Just never know what's going on at school when you aren't there, you can't be there all the time. A lot of time there isn't much adult supervision when this is going on.
With social media a lot of it happens outside of school.  The school district says the best defense is for parents to stay involved....

I have a curfew for my child, I do a little snooping and see what is going on with them

So what happens if a tip turns out to be a case of bullying? The bully gets punished and the district has specially trained counselors on hand to counsel both the victim and the perpetrator in a bullying case.  The other student has the option to change schools.