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Last Updated: Tuesday July 25 2006 06:40 GMT

New tips to tackle cyber-bullies

Using a mobile phone to text
Top tips to help schools, parents and kids stamp out hi-tech bullying have been published by the government.

New research shows that one in five children have been bullied via the internet or a mobile phone - called cyber-bullying.

The advice includes mums and dad of bullies attending special parenting classes or paying 1,000 fines.

Schools minister Jim Knight said: "No child should suffer the misery of bullying, online or off-line."

The new guidelines say that each school should have specific rules to deal with the high-tech abuse and all emails sent at school should be monitored.

Bullying dilemma quiz
A boy being bullied
Parents and kids are being urged to find out about how to use new technology safely and the advice says that young people should not answer abusive e-mails, text messages or phone calls, but should always tell an adult and get advice, keeping e-mails and texts as evidence.

The government's tips - which have been sent to all schools - also point out how important it is to keep to public areas of chatrooms and to never give out personal contact details online or post personal photographs.

Private spaces

Mr Knight added: "Unlike other forms of bullying, cyber-bullying can follow children and young people into their private spaces and outside school hours.

"This is why it is essential that parents and young people themselves should understand how to use technologies safely to protect themselves at home and outside school hours, as well as supporting their schools in dealing with incidents."

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