CT teens develop bullying app to protect peers
NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WHDH) -- A group of Connecticut teens has developed an app to protect their peers. The app is called ‘Back off Bully’ or ‘BOB’.
They hope it will change the way schools respond to the issue across the state.
Statistics show one in four Connecticut kids suffers the horrors of bullying.
“Students are bullied and they don't know how or where to go to get help,” said Christina Puglisi, a BOB developer.
The brainchild of 14 teens in a New Haven design class may become standard operating procedure at schools across the state.
The web app is an anonymous resource. When kids witness or are the victim of bullying they can use their computer, smart phone, or iPad to report the incident. The app will ask questions about where and when the bullying is happening. All of the reported information is put in a data base so administrators can study it for common threads, intervene and break the bully's pattern.
“It’s not something adults are telling them something to use, it's something kids are making for one another,” Adam Scott who worked with research and design, said of the app.
“Instead of doing negative things for their phone, do a positive thing. Report somebody,” said Michelle Zheng, a Bob developer.
“We’re making reporters out of the 400 students at our school. So we can hope that we're catching more of that bullying and be able to actually affect change,” said Puglisi.
Students have already begun promoting the app around the Metropolitan Academy. They plan to make a big push with next year's freshman class.