DOBBS FERRY, N.Y. — The Dobbs Ferry School District will begin using a new communications tool called Anonymous Alerts on Thursday, which allows individuals to report information to school officials without revealing their identity.
The system will allow confidential information concerning bullying, family difficulties, drug and alcohol abuse, depression and other sensitive student matters to be conveyed via Internet-enabled messages directly to school administrators.
“We want our students to feel safe in school and have the ability to report any acts of bullying and share social-emotional concerns, as well as time-sensitive issues, without the risk of negative consequences or the fear of retaliation,” said Sylvia Fassler-Wallach, assistant superintendent of finance, facilities and operations.
Anonymous Alerts may also be used for two-way dialogue if desired. Messages may be submitted anonymously to a school principal or assistant principal using a Smartphone or computer. When submitting a message, students may also upload or attach a photo directly from an iPhone, iPad or Smartphone to accompany the text.
According to a statement by the district Tuesday, all reports will remain anonymous, but those who wish to have the option of revealing their identity and having a person-to-person discussion.
Dobbs Ferry School Superintendent Lisa Brady released this statement on the district's website about the system:
“Our No. 1 priority is the physical and emotional well-being of our students and staff. Given the recent nationwide tragedies surrounding mental health issues and violence, it is imperative that schools stay on top of urgent student concerns and increase the flow of actionable information to administrators who can quickly address problems as they arise. The Anonymous Alerts service will help our school personnel to track and report such incidents, which is also a requirement of New York State’s School Dignity Act.”