Cyber Bullying: What parents can do

September 27, 2012

Illinois Attorney General's Office sends their internet safety expert throughout the state to collaborate with law enforcement personnel, school administrators, psychologists and other social workers in an effort to teach children how to make smart online choices. She has also helped launch a website about cyber bulling and is here today to share some tips and an warning signs parents should look out for.


    Create a digital culture in their home
    Encourage responsible digital citizenship-give children expectation for use and discuss consequences
  • Set time limits
  • Monitor profiles, texting, devices
  • Have a family docking station
  • Review terms of service agreements
  • Understand how devices and applications work
  • Engage their children in an ongoing conversation about choices they make online
  • Create a technology free zone
    Challenge Critical Thinking Skills
  • Challenge children to think about who they "friend"
  • Do they know the person? How well?
  • Challenge children to think about what they post
  • Will this hurt my reputation (digital story)
  • Will this negatively impact another person
  • Who is my audience?
  • Are our conversation and/or content really private or public?
  • Can we delete content that we post/send?
  • Challenge students to think about how they respond when they see inappropriate content.
  • What is the child's role as a digital citizen?
    Warning Signs
  • Withdrawing
  • School refusal
  • Somatic complaints
  • Falling out with friends
  • Refusing to show content


Sarah Migas, MSW

Internet Safety Specialist, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan's Office Sarah Migas obtained her MSW in 2007 from Dominican University. She is a fourteenyear veteran of the field of social work and also taught in the Chicago Public School System. She is currently assigned as the Internet Safety Specialist for the Illinois Attorney General's Office. Additionally, Ms. Migas is an adjunct professor in the Graduate School of Social Work at Dominican University. Ms. Migas has a long history of working as an educator and social worker on behalf of children both locally and globally. Ms. Migas has spent time in diverse roles, in varied settings working on ensuring the welfare of children. That work has included direct service as a Child Advocate in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Fairbanks, Alaska, as a Treatment Counselor in a residential facility for children in Portland, Oregon, and as a Child Welfare Specialist at Catholic Charities in Chicago, Illinois.

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