When schools give students access to laptops and email accounts through platforms like Google Suite and Outlook 365, an incredible world of learning opportunities opens up — as well as potential dangers. As schools know, keeping kids safe with today’s technology begins with limiting access and blocking adult content to keep things PG.
But online safety doesn’t end there. A bigger issue remains: How to monitor all of the content your students are creating, sharing, and sending.
With Bark for Schools, you can intelligently monitor all student communications on both G Suite and Outlook 365 platforms, receiving alerts at the first sign of potential danger.
Why should schools monitor online content?
Put simply, to detect potentially dangerous situations that students may be facing both in and out of school, including:
- Suicidal ideation
- Sexual content
- Threats of violence
While you and your staff could manually monitor student accounts – every email, every chat, and every document – spot-checking is labor-intensive and ineffective. As an educator, your primary focus is on teaching, not monitoring thousands of messages a day.
Bark can alert you to potentially harmful issues – and it’s free.
Bark for Schools is free (forever!) and available for all public and private K-12 schools in the U.S. Because our revenue comes entirely from our Bark for Parents product, we offer Bark for Schools to schools for free as a way to give back to our communities and to help keep our children safe.
Plus, with Bark for Schools, there’s easy setup, zero ongoing maintenance, and free technical support.
How does Bark monitor so many millions of messages each day?
Bark for Schools uses industry-leading, machine-learning algorithms to continually monitor email messages, chat conversations, and documents. When problems are detected, Bark will notify the people who need to know – IT directors, principals, school resource officers – through email and/or text message.
The vast majority of messages – harmless ones about homework, pets, or Fortnite – you’ll have no need to cull through.
Seamlessly connect your School's G Suite or Office 365 account to Bark. Bark for Schools takes about three minutes to set up.
Using machine learning, Bark proactively monitors all of the communications found in student accounts for inappropriate or risky content.
Potentially harmful messages will trigger an alert that’s sent to your device. To manage the issues, Bark provides an easy-to-use dashboard with detailed information.
Being proactive saves lives
Thanks to our monitoring and alerts, Bark has helped the lives of countless children, tweens, and teens — and we're just getting started. We're bringing this technology to schools, for FREE, because early intervention can help educators and parents de-escalate issues likes cyberbullying, suicidal ideation, sexting, and more.
CONTENT MONITORING ACROSS APPLICATIONS
G Suite or Office 365 – including Gmail, Outlook, Google Drive, Google Hangouts, OneDrive, Google Chat, and more.
HELP PREVENT SERIOUS SITUATIONS
Bark’s intelligent machine learning looks for communications that show evidence of potential cyberbullying, suicidal ideation, sexual content, threats of violence, and more.
Receive automatic alerts when Bark detects potentially harmful issues, along with evidence and expert recommendations from child psychologists on what to do next.
Bark saves IT directors and school personnel from manually digging through student accounts when there's a possible incident.
PARTNER WITH PARENTS
Schools have the option to work with parents to share the responsibility of receiving urgent critical alerts from their children.
Issues can pop up at any time. That’s why we also monitor student accounts during evenings, weekends, and holidays, when some of the most critical incidents can occur.
Results of our Spring 2018 Case Study
FALL SEMESTER 2018
Findings after analyzing Google accounts provided by the school to the students.
5 BOMB/SHOOTING THREATS
1,494,438 ISSUES DISCOVERED
(avg. 0.85 per student)
involved in cyberbullying on school-issued Google accounts
of children using school accounts to buy, sell, or discuss taking illicit drugs
expressed self-harm, cutting and/or suicidal thoughts
of nudity/explicit content
We protect student privacy and school data.
Security is one of our highest priorities at Bark, and we adhere to all of the standards required by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), a federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. In an effort to provide maximum protection for students and their families, many states have adopted their own privacy legislation in addition to FERPA, and we meet or exceed each of these requirements, as well.
We secure all of our data within an encrypted database, including backups. The database is then purged after it’s been analyzed. Our server infrastructure is located in highly secured physical data centers that use a centralized bastion host, which is monitored to detect unwarranted access/activity. All web browser sessions use and require SSL encryption. And of course, no data is ever sold or given to any third party for any reason.
Testimonials & Press
"Bark for Schools is the real deal. We didn't have any sort of content scanning before getting Bark. Within a few days, Bark found multiple issues that would have gone unnoticed if we hadn't been scanning Gmail and Hangouts. When an issue arose that could have been life-threatening for one of our students, a Bark team member called our school to help us take correct action."
SEBEKA PUBLIC SCHOOL
"As a school principal, Bark gives me the peace of mind that we have the capability of monitoring our students’ online interactions and the convenience of staying informed to address concerns with individual students. It further strengthens our partnership with parents to truly come together to form the whole child for the real world and the harsh reality of the online world as well."
HOLY SPIRIT PREPARATORY SCHOOL
"Cyberbullying is a problem that schools struggle to control or even identify within their culture. Bark provides a way for schools to collaborate with parents in a proactive way to combat this issue and provide a safer environment for learning."
WESTMORELAND INTERMEDIATE UNIT
Founded by parents who needed a better option, Bark launched its product for parents in 2015 with one goal in mind – keeping kids safe on their internet-connected devices. We’ve developed world-class technologies to create Bark, and our award-winning monitoring tool is the most comprehensive on the market.
That same award-winning technology now powers Bark for Schools. Today, we serve over half a million families, helping parents and administrators mitigate the risks of cyberbullying, acts of violence, self-harm, and other concerns that children, tweens, and teens face.