A Reviewer's Guide: Bark for Schools

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Brian Richards
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This article will cover how to use Bark for Schools as a Reviewer. 

We developed Bark for Schools with school officials in mind. As such, it is a simple-to-use but incredibly powerful tool for helping your efforts to keep students safe on school-issued accounts and technology.

The very first page you'll see is the dashboard and everything can be navigated from the top right account menu (where your name is located):

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Menu Options

  1. Dashboard
  2. Monitoring Reports
  3. Monitoring Alerts
  4. Parent Portal Settings
  5. Profile
  6. Support
  7. Refer a School

1. Dashboard

The dashboard will provide high level statistics around the groups that have been assigned to you. 

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Activities Analyzed

This represents all activity we've seen since Bark for Schools was turned on. The data here will reflect all turned on groups for monitoring - not just your class(es). 

Alerts to Review

This represents any issues outstanding for the groups assigned to you. If there is a number here, there is an issue that has been detected but hasn't been looked at by any other Reviewers.

Number of Students Actively Monitored

"Bark is monitoring X students across Y organizational units."

These numbers are based on the organizational units or groups your Bark Super Admin has enabled for monitoring. If the number seems low, you may need to reach out to your Bark Super Admin to verify the configuration is set up properly. For additional assistance, reach out to us.

2. Monitoring Reports

The reports section allows you a glimpse of what is occurring across the groups assigned to you, from a statistical standpoint. 

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In the images above, we've identified some key sections:

Line graph: This area provides an alert count by day and by platform (e.g. Gmail vs Drive). You can also filter by date on the top right.

Table: This area provides an alert count for the dates selected and breaks them down bytype (e.g. Violence, Bullying, etc) as well as by group or organizational unit (e.g. Class of 2025). You can search by a group, or choose one of the groups displayed. Groups in this section are displayed in descending order of alerts generated. Clicking into one of these group names gives a sub-group level view of the data, which is further broken down by student name.

3a. Review Alerts (Sorting Options)

This page is where you'll be able to review what Bark has identified as inappropriate or potentially harmful for a student. We provide a number of filtering options to allow you to get to data very quickly.

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In the image above, we've identified some key sections:

A) A filter that can be applied to sort by Category -- such as violence, bullying, and sexual content (this list is not exhaustive).

B) A filter that can be applied to sort by Groups. If you have more than one group (or class, grade) assigned to you, you can filter out by group.

C) A filter that can be applied to sort the student. The student's email, first name, or last name works here.

D) A filter that can be applied to sort by platform. If on Google Workspace, that will be Gmail, Drive, and/or Chrome. If on Microsoft 365, that will be Outlook, OneDrive, and/or Edge Chromium.

E) A filter that can be applied to sort by date.

F) A filter that can be applied to sort by View Status. If an issue has been reviewed by any administrator, the issue can be reviewed by checking the "Reviewed" box. Any viewed issue will have a timestamp and name of the user that reviewed it, as seen in the example below:

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G) A filter that can be applied to sort by Other, which are further detailed below:

  • The Save for later filter refers to a "review later" function within an alert (displayed below). This filter allows you to return to an alert quickly.
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  • The severe filter allows you to target any identified severe alert. A severe alert is an issue that has hit a threshold in a category and is more actionable. We will always email on severe issues. Severe issues are further identified by a red exclamation mark ❗️, as seen in the example below:
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  • The emergency filter allows you to target any identified emergency alert. An emergency alert is an issue that indicates imminent severe harm to the child. These alerts are also accompanied by a red exclamation mark ❗️. We will always email on emergency issues. Bark for Schools+ subscribers receive a phone call and text message in addition to an email for these types of issues.

3b. Reading an Alert

After clicking into an alert on the list, you will see the actual content that triggered the alert. Below we use an example alert to point out some tips on reading alerts. For more example alerts, check out this guide.

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In the image above, we've identified some key sections:

A) The name and account email for the student that we detected this activity under, whether they were the sender or the receiver of the worrisome content.

B) The organizational unit structure that the student's account is under. This comes directly from whatever your Google Workspace / Office365 structure is for managing student accounts. The super admin on the account can turn off particular OUs/groups from being monitored by following these steps. They can also assign particular OUs/groups to only certain Reviewers.

C) The platform the activity took place under as well as the participants in the conversation. In the example above, it is a Google Chat between two people.

D) The abuse types we detected from the activity. We alert on many different types worrisome content, including bullying, suicidal ideation, drug/alcohol content, violence, weapons, self-harm and more.

E) The first person who reviewed this alert is included here. To see the timeline of the alert review history, or to put in a note about what action was taken, click on (more...) there. You'll then see something like this:

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F) This part of the alert displays the exact worrisome content that we detected.

G) This button allows you to share this particular alert with another Reviewer that also has been assigned this OU/group.

H) This function allows the Reviewer to share this alert with the parent or guardian if they've enabled Parent Portal. For more information on Parent Portal, check out our FAQs here.

3. Parent Portal

This is a free feature available to you and your administration.

Parent Portal lets you share alerts and responsibility with parents and guardians in an effort to help keep your students safe 24/7. Urgent alerts can happen at times when your administration may not be able to respond — like before and after school, on weekends, and during school vacations. Parent Portal is a completely free service that comes with your Bark for Schools account, and activation is easy.

For additional information on how to explain Parent Portal to your team and the parents in your community, click here.

Still have questions about Parent Portal? Check out our FAQs here.

4. Profile

This page allows you to update first and last name, and emergency contact number. Be sure to click Save after making any changes.

For more information on editing your profile, visit this article: How to Edit Profile Settings

5. Support

This section will allow you to reach out with questions, concerns, suggestions, or anything you need to reach Bark for Schools about.

You can submit a ticket to our team (with team members available 8am-5pm EST, Monday through Friday), schedule a call, and view help articles related to Bark for Schools.

Additionally, you can visit our Facebook group to connect with other schools on student safety, or browse our blog to learn more about topics that can help bolster your student safety efforts. 

6. Refer a school

Want to help us in our mission to protect every student and every school and district in America for free?

Here's where you can.

This page provides you with an email template that you can send to schools and/or districts that you know could benefit from Bark for Schools.

 

How do I reach the Bark for Schools team?

We have an incredible team behind the scenes here at Bark. For technical questions, we can be reached here. Our team is happy to help!