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Dear Parents and Guardians,
Student safety is a priority at Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board. Our goal is to make all schools safe, inclusive and respectful places for our students, staff and community.
With this goal in mind, we are excited to announce that your school will benefit from the latest mobile technology intended to encourage anonymous reporting of bullying and other incidents that may lead to unsafe conditions at our schools.
This service, called TipOff, is essentially a way to receive text messages, to gather more information about the tip and to share it with the school to enable Board and school protocols to be implemented. Every sender’s phone number is scrambled to preserve their anonymity.
We expect that this will result in safer schools because students can share tips without the fear of reprisal, judgment or discovery. Research tells us that when students, staff and parents are all involved in promoting a positive school environment, school can become a safer and more welcoming place.
We have worked closely with the service provider, InTouch Mobile, so that this service reflects HWDSB’s operating procedures and goals. It is now available to schools with students in grades 7 to 12. We want to continue to make schools safer and more welcoming. Letting students anonymously share information is one way to do this.
It is important to note that TipOff will not provide counselling. It can, however, direct students in crisis to 911. It is not a substitute for school policies. Instead, it supports Board policies, such as the requirement that HWDSB have a way to receive anonymous reports of bullying. This information service will help schools collect tips and then address them in the same way a school would address a face-to-face tip.
You can learn more about TipOff on the following website: http://www.hwdsb.on.ca/schools/tipoff/
If you have more questions, please feel free to contact your school’s principal.
Pamela B. Reinholdt
Executive Superintendent of Student Achievement
If this is an emergency, call 911.
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