Posts Tagged ‘Andre Sohatski’

Time To Shut Down Teacher Bullying Websites

December 22, 2011

I commend head teacher Andre Sohatski for not only standing up for himself and his reputation, but also for representing the downtrodden teachers and students victimised by scandalous bullying websites proliferating across the web.

Web sites like allow students to post salacious accusations and damaging insults. These sites, together with sites that allow students to slander other students such as Little Gossip  have been allowed to remain unhindered under the guise of freedom of speech.

Until now …

Andre Sohatski, headteacher of Priory School in Dorking, Surrey, took action after being told by his pupils that children were being targeted on the website Little Gossip with homophobic, racist and sexist abuse.

The site contains abusive and explicit messages written by schoolchildren that can be rated “true” or “false” by their peers. It allows them to name their “targets” but the user remains anonymous.

Mr Sohatski called for the site to be shut down and said it could cause “really big problems,” for children.

“I think it’s irresponsible. It is a form of internet bullying. Any kind of comment posted anonymously about somebody is basically unfair and sometimes cruel,” he said.

Police said they would investigate the US-based website, which has previously faced heavy criticism, and said the consequences of online bullying were “worrying”.

I am a big believer in the freedom of speech. I can accept that people have the right to vent about any professional within certain boundaries. When a student slanders another student or a teacher with homophobic, racist, sexist or defamatory insults it is fair to say those boundaries have been well and truly crossed.

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