After School app raises concerns of bullying, inappropriate activity

BURLINGTON, N.C. -- Research is all Lieutenant Mark Yancey did on Thursday.

He's catching up on a new platform for students called After School app.

This is just one Yancey is focused on at the moment as kids are misusing others too.

"One may be popular now but six months from now it switched," Yancey said.

Dr. LaJuana Norfleet knew about the After School app for months.

"Well I have two teenage boys myself so they keep me up to speed," Norfleet said.

She's the Alamance-Burlington School System director of student support services.

Norfleet said the app has been active within the district for a while

"The app is there, but it's not as popular," Norfleet said.

She said it gives students the opportunity to speak their mind and connect with other classmates.

Norfleet says the After School app is similar to others.

She said students post and their identity remain anonymous. It's only for high school students based on what school they attend.

School officials do have concerns of bullying and other inappropriate activity because of the app, but students can turn to the district's safe tip hotline for help.

This is a resource which gives them an outlet to anonymously report any bullying they might come across.

"We can narrow down the scope and if need be start our investigation from there," Norfleet said.

It turns into something much more serious when comments lead to someone being injured.

That's when police step in when they're made aware of it.

"From that time we look at it from an investigation standpoint to see if there's a criminal action," Yancey said.

Both Norfleet and Yancey say communication is crucial.

Parents need to talk with their kids to help monitor their activity on this app.

"Our conversations are just regular, everyday conversations that start about 'Hey, how was your day in school?'" Norfleet said.