“This collaborative effort is a direct result of our continued efforts to provide a safe learning environment for our children,” said Rich Stilley, Hannibal School District business manager, said.

The Hannibal Public School District has a new tool in its belt to combat in-person and online bullying at school.

While much bullying takes place online through social media accessible on hand-held mobile devices, the district and the Hannibal Police Department announced the release of the BullyBox app at Hannibal High School on Wednesday, May 9. The BullyBox is a mobile application, available on iPhone and Android platforms, designed to allow students to safely and anonymously report acts of bullying or other school-safety concerns.

“This collaborative effort is a direct result of our continued efforts to provide a safe learning environment for our children,” said Rich Stilley, Hannibal School District business manager, said.

After investigating several other apps and programs, and through feedback from students, the BullyBox was selected and has been in testing by HPS and HPD for several months. The BullyBox provides a "voice" to those being victimized, as well as empowering up-standers, while simultaneously allowing reporters to refrain from becoming directly involved in the incident. The application is available for free download on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.

Students will have a means by which to safely and anonymously report school-safety concerns to their administrators, whether those concerns pertain to bullying, drugs, weapons, or fights on campus. In addition, by utilizing data gathered from the reported incidents, Stilley says educators will be better positioned to improve existing strategies for resolving problems associated with bullying or other school-safety issues in their school buildings.