CINCINNATI (AP) — Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Johnny Bench has launched a new cellphone app aimed at combatting bullying in schools nationwide.

The Cincinnati Reds catcher officially launched his “Smithfield School App” on Thursday at the Montgomery Inn Boathouse in downtown Cincinnati.

The app — named for its sponsor Smithfield Foods — allows teachers and administrators to notify parents of reports of bullying, cyberbullying, threats, school closings and other alerts.

Approximately 5,000 schools across the country are slated to use the app, which is free for users with schools paying a $79 monthly hosting fee.

Bench says he still remembers two boys who bullied him when he was in eighth grade more than 50 years ago. He says he wants to see every child protected as much as possible.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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