NJ Freehold Borough School District Implements Anonymous Reporting System to Ensure Safe Learning Environment

Lauren Williams's picture
Monday, October 29, 2012

In an effort to meet the requirements of the New Jersey’s Anti‐Bullying Bill of Rights and improve and maintain student safety, Freehold Borough School District is launching an online risk management, incident reporting and prevention platform called TIPS.The TIPS platform equips all students, parents, faculty, staff and others to safely and anonymously or non‐anonymously report concerning behaviors and suspicious incidents.

An award‐winning suite of web‐based risk management tools developed by the privately held organization Awareity, TIPS empowers individuals to anonymously report suspicious activities and incidents involving bullying, cyberbullying, weapons, drug/alcohol use, school vandalism, threats of violence, suicide risk, sexual harassment, abuse, truancy and numerous other incidents.

In addition to defining bullying more clearly, the Anti‐Bullying Bill of Rights requires every public school to report all cases of bullying, harassment and/or intimidation to the state. Verbal reports must be given to principals on the day of an observed incident and a written report must be provided within two days. Families must be notified, as well as the superintendent of schools, and an investigation must take place within ten days of the incident.

“TIPS is helping our school administrators become more aware of student safety incidents and concerning behaviors within our
schools. When a report comes in through TIPS, principals can immediately investigate the incident, confirm its validity and take the necessary steps towards intervention and response,” said Michael D’anna, the District’s Anti‐Bullying Coordinator.

If someone has information about concerning behaviors or suspicious activities that may warrant concern for the safety of students, faculty or staff, the individual can simply access TIPS from the district website, select their school and anonymously report the information, D’Anna explained.

Once an incident is reported in TIPS, the appropriate personnel from each school and at the district level are immediately notified. TIPS makes it easy for safety team members to coordinate actions and securely share information during investigations, intervention and prevention efforts. TIPS also documents all actions to ensure legal due diligence and compliance with state and federal requirements. Team members can quickly see all incidents for their school/district, review individual incident reports, set up automated reminders for themselves or other team members, escalate to the appropriate third‐parties and search/review related incidents in real‐time.

“TIPS is equipping schools across the Nation with the tools to become more aware of threats, concerns and incidents, and in turn
helping schools build a stronger and safer learning climate ongoing. Not only does TIPS reduce paper‐based costs for documentation, but TIPS can significantly reduce the time and resources spent trying to comply with the Anti‐Bullying Bill of Rights,” says founder and CEO of Awareity, Rick Shaw.

The NJ Anti‐Bullying Bill of Rights also requires schools to implement a plan outlining how they will address bullying and all teachers and administrators must be trained to identify and respond to bullying. The TIPS Awareness Vault allows school administrators to easily share training and updates with staff and faculty and ensure all individuals understand their roles and responsibilities. With on‐demand reporting, school districts can easily meet compliance requirements ongoing.

About Awareity:
Awareity helps leading organizations prevent the preventable and transform the status quo. Awareity is reinventing the way schools improve safety and helping organizations prevent regulatory failures, compliance fines, lawsuits, privacy breaches, safety disconnects, operational challenges, ethical lapses, incident reporting failures, workplace violence and more. Awareity offers an innovative and cost‐effective platform to connect the dots, eliminate embarrassing gaps and realize a better bottom line. For more information visit www.awareity.com or contact Awareity at info@awareity.com.