O'Sullivan calls for cyber safety education in schools



The Nationals Member for Northern Victoria, Luke O’Sullivan, has requested the Education Minister, James Merlino, to add Fleur Ferris’s book ‘Risk’ to the 2017 year seven curriculum in schools across Victoria.

The matter was raised during adjournment debate, with Mr O’Sullivan detailing the importance of educating young people on the dangers of meeting and chatting with strangers online.

"The book Risk is a story about the dangers of engaging with strangers online and the risks that can occur when young people do engage with strangers through online chat rooms." Mr O’Sullivan said.

"As a father of two young daughters, and my eldest daughter entering year seven next year, I believe that reading and studying Fleur Ferris’ book Risk would be an invaluable resource document which would pave the way for discussions about the dangers of online engagement with strangers.

Risk is a story about a young popular school girl who after several days of chat room interaction, meets up with a ‘guy’ at a shopping centre, which lead to tragic consequences.

Mr O’Sullivan urged the Minister for Education to take action on the issue, highlighting the significance this book has for parents of children entering adolescence.

"I implore the Minister for Education, who has a young family himself, to read Risk and to add it to the school curriculum as early as next year as this book will hopefully help with good decision making by young adults and may even save lives."

"We teach our children about the dangers of strangers in the street, playground and at school, now it’s time to teach them about stranger danger on the internet." said Mr O’Sullivan.

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