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News and articles relating to Gloucestershire including Cheltenham, Cirencester, Gloucester, Stroud, Fairford and Lechlade.

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Schools Get Tough on Cyber Bullying

Cyber Bullying is a new and worrying form of bullying which is on the increase and Gloucestershire County Council is providing schools with information on how to deal with it.

The Education sub-group of Gloucestershire Safeguarding Children Board has joined together with Gloucestershire County Council's Healthy Schools Partnership to provide a new anti-bullying pack which will be distributed to schools after the Easter holiday.


Unlike other forms of bullying, cyber bullying can follow children, young people and adults into their private spaces and outside school hours.

Cyberbullies can communicate their messages to a wide audience with remarkable speed, and can often remain unidentifiable and unseen.

Different categories of cyber bullying include:

· Text messages

· Picture/video-clips via mobile phone cameras

· Mobile phone using silent calls or abusive messages.

· Emails sending bullying or threatening messages

· Chat rooms involving sending menacing or upsetting responses to chat room messages

· Instant messaging (IM) is when people are sent unpleasant messages as they conduct real-time conversations online

· Via websites where defamatory blogs (web logs), personal websites and online personal polling sites are used

Councillor Joan Nash, Cabinet Member for Schools, said: "The county council takes the issue of cyber bullying very seriously and is constantly aiming to ensure that those working with and caring for children and young people have access to the most up to date and relevant information.

"The county council is also working with schools to protect staff from cyber bullying and harassment by ensuring that policies and procedures are present in school to guard against such incidents."

The information will take the form of a card within the anti-bullying pack already available to all schools. Complete new packs including the new information card and a CD Rom entitled 'Know it All' by Childnet International will be sent out to schools next week.

Anti-Bullying packs can be downloaded from www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/healthyschools selecting 'Key Guidance and Advice Documents' from the menu on the left.

Hundreds Taking Part To Keep Cotswolds Clean

Litter-pickers across the Cotswolds are doing their bit this Spring to keep their towns and villages clean and tidy.

Cotswold District Council’s annual ‘Spring Clean’ event allows a range of community groups to get out and improve the appearance of their town or village by targeting known litter hot-spots.

Groups taking part collect crisp packets, food cartons, drink cans and other litter, and the Council helps out by providing free litter-picking tools, high-visibility tabards, gloves and litter sacks – and arranges for hundreds of sacks of rubbish to be collected afterwards.

Any events held in March and April and organized through the Council are also covered by its insurance.

At the end of March, nearly 500 people had volunteered to help the Spring Clean effort, including Scouts, parish councils, schools and church groups, in locations ranging from Tetbury in the south to Blockley in the north.
Further events are still being lined up across the Cotswolds until the end of April, with groups in Ampney Crusis, Winstone, Cherington and Withington among those set to play their part with litter-picking.

Scott Williams, the Waste Manager at Cotswold District Council, said:  “The involvement from community volunteers and members of the public to help out with the annual Spring Clean event is always greatly appreciated.
“The Council has a limited budget to clean the streets and look after the upkeep of the District. We cannot be everywhere at once, so it is hugely encouraging that so many volunteers are prepared to support our efforts to keep the Cotswolds clean.”

If you are planning a clean-up and would like to order bags and gloves, please contact Cotswold District Council’s waste department on 01285 623000 or email caroline.ballinger@cotswold.gov.uk    

New recycling facilities have been introduced in the car park of Cirencester’s Waitrose supermarket.

Businesses Targeted by Scams

Businesses in Gloucestershire have reported being on the receiving end of a new wave of scams. Read on for advice on what to do if you think you've been targeted.


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