A headteacher has taken the unusual step of contacting police after students have been ‘cyber bullied’ on a Latvian social networking website.
Headteacher Stephen Box contacted Thames Valley Police on Tuesday for help and sent out a warning letter to parents on Wednesday.
The website, ask.fm, allows users to pose and answer questions anonymously but has led to ‘bullying’ among students at Sir Henry Floyd Grammar School.
Mr Box said: “I have never come across it. It’s new to me. It’s sad to me that some of the children have been hurt by what’s written on it.
“It’s none of our business what students do in the evenings or at the weekends but when some of our students are affected at school, it is.”
Mr Box said because of the website’s origins it made the job of tracing who made the comments difficult for the school and the police.
The headteacher said this meant he was unsure how many students could be using the site.
However, Mr Box said he did know there are some year 9s and 10s logging onto it.
He said: “The police have been in talking to some of the students we know are using it.”
PC Graham Briggenshaw, safer schools officer, said: “Sites like the one are often used in cyber bullying and I would urge any teenagers who are members to use more traditional social media methods as a way of staying in touch with their friends.
“Several students have been spoken to by the school however it cannot be determined whether the abusive comments originated from pupils at the school or from another user of the site”
Mr Box said the police would also be visiting the school to hold an assembly, warning students about the dangers of such websites.
In his letter he also revealed plans to hold an ‘e-safety evening’ for parents later in the year and advised them to educate their children on the dangers of social media sites.