Web Extra!

Riverside-Brookfield High School student was recently suspended from school for a few days because she created a Facebook group which demeaned a fellow RB student.

The Facebook posting, which was taken down after school officials were alerted to its existence, named an RB student, believed to be a freshman boy.

The Facebook group quickly grew to have more than 100 members, many of them RB students.

The student who created the group was a freshman girl, according to the parent of a student who knows the girl. That parent, who spoke to the Landmark on condition of anonymity, said that girl had been suspended for three days.

Interim District 208 Superintendent David Bonnette refused to identify the student who was suspended and would only say that the student had been suspended for “more than a day.”

“We don’t tolerate bullying,” Bonnette said. “If you are a victim you need to tell somebody. We can then put into place a variety of measures, which also includes addressing the person that is delivering the bullying message.”

Bonnette said that the parents of the student who was suspended cooperated with school officials. The parent of the student who was singled out and demeaned on Facebook also was cooperative. Bonnette said.

“We’re pleased that has been some resolution to this,” Bonnette said. “The parents have been cooperative and worked with their kids on it.”

The spirit in which the group was set up was not clear, but a number of RB students made comments on the Facebook page. It is believed that only the girl who created the group was disciplined.

Cyber-bullying has become a problem among adolescents as the popularity of social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace grows.

Just last month a 15-year-old high school freshman girl from South Hadley, Mass., committed suicide after having been bullied and taunted by classmates both on Facebook and in person.

Bonnette said that teenagers often do not understand that their actions can have serious consequences even if they are meant as a joke.

“Kids do not anticipate sometimes the consequences of what may be not necessarily a malicious intent,” Bonnette said.