Bully software program gaining popularity in school districts

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HOLMEN, Wis (WEAU)- A computer software program is helping Wisconsin schools fight bullying and it’s starting to gain popularity throughout the districts.

The Holmen school district is one out of four throughout the state to have started using the program called Sprigio. It works like crime-stoppers tip line, giving students the power to report bullying anomalously.

More than 500 schools throughout 21 states are using the program, and schools can buy it for less than $300 dollars a year.

How it works is that a student, parent, or teacher, can use the website to report the specifics of when, what, where, and what bullying happened. All they have to do is click ‘submit’ and the report is sent to the principle.

“It takes out the fear of having to go to a teacher or principal.” Said CEO of Sprigio, Joe Bruzzese.

Riley Eklund-Peterson is a new freshman at Holmen High School, and he’s already seeing the counselors with bully problems. He says other kids are calling him names.

“Stuff like that happens a lot to me but I don’t let it get to me,” said Riley.

Riley said that his friends are bullied too, but they are too scared to talk about it to the teachers. He believes using this new software might be the right way to let teachers know what is going on without jeopardizing his friendships.

“It’s hard to watch. I think it will be great to report it and they won’t know you did it,” said Riley.

The software can be accessed on the computer, I-pad, or phone. Holmen has yet to receive any reports, but is still in the process of trying to educate students and parents about the program.

A survey showed that with Sprigio there is an average of one bully report per week. Deforest, McFarland, and Monroe school districts are the other three using the program in Wisconsin.

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