Tuesday September 02, 2014

Cyber bullying focus of Open Cinema event


The Yorkton Film Festival is pleased to announce the last film in our Open Cinema program for the 2013-2014 season. Tuesday, March 11, YFF, the Yorkton Public Library and the Yorkton Branch of the Canadian Federation of University Women (CFUW) will host an event to explore the very topical and important issue of cyber bullying.  

Cyber bullying has led the news on radio talk shows and television broadcasts in the last two years. The tragedies of Rehtaeh Parsons and Amanda Todd have made headlines around the world. The issue is heartbreakingly serious. Yet the news coverage is limited in its scope. It concentrates on the tragedy but says nothing about the positive approaches that are being taken to deal with the issue. The fact is that much can be done. Much is being done. That is the focus of the March 11th program of OPEN CINEMA.

The evening will begin with the viewing of a short film entitled Cyber Bullying. This documentary follows the lives of four youth and explores how technology has changed everything about how kids relate to each other – and the dangers that come with instant communication in public forums.

After the film a panel of will comment on the documentary and talk about current initiatives to deal with the issue.  Dennis Nesseth, Student Services Counselor at the Yorkton Regional High School, will moderate the panel and lead the discussion. Nesseth has recently completed a paper on the Role of the School in Cyber Bullying, one assignment on his way to a Master’s Degree in Educational Administration. Lana Stanek-Sebastian will talk about Digital Citizenship, a unit she teaches to her grade nine class in Computer Fundamentals. Shelly Westberg, School Counselor with the Good Spirit School Division, will explain the role of mediation in cyber bullying while a school liaison officer will discuss the issue from the police perspective. Finally and perhaps most importantly, a group of students from the YRHS will talk about their participation in Beyond the Hurt, a Red Cross program aimed at the prevention of bullying and the building of empathy and respect.  

Wow! A wow panel! A wow event!

In addition, CFUW - Yorkton, a local partner in hosting this event, has played an important role nationally in the issue of cyber bullying.  Non-partisan and self-funded, the organization has lobbied governments in respect to issues of human rights, social justice and peace. CFUW has made a number of recommendations in regards to cyber bullying, namely that governments work to

• Increase public awareness of the problem

• Ensure that teachers and counselors receive appropriate training

• Encourage the education of parents so they can teach their children strategies to deal with an on-line world

OPEN CINEMA is honoured to present the discussion of a very important issue – a national issue that we look at from a local perspective, from a positive perspective.  We hope you can attend this important event to be held at the Yorkton Public Library Tuesday, March 11 at 7:00.



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