Kent County Sheriff: tips to prevent bullying

 Bullying, when one child picks on another repeatedly, is an increasing problem in schools — it can be physical, verbal or social.  One only has to think of the most recent school shooting to know that bullying can have tragic consequences. The Kent County Sheriff’s Office wants to help you ensure your child is safe from bullying at school and promote an atmosphere where problems can be worked out constructively, and offers the following tips.

When your child is bullied:
• Help your child learn how to respond by teaching your child how to: --look the bully in the eye;--stand tall and stay calm in a difficult situation; --Walk away.

•?Teach your child how to say in a firm voice: --I don’t like what you are doing; --Please do NOT talk to me like that; --Why would you say that?

• Teach your child when and how to ask for help. 

• Encourage your child to make friends with other kids.

• Support activities that interest your child. 

• Alert school officials to the problems and work with them on solutions. 

• Make sure an adult who knows about the bullying can watch out for your child’s safety and well-being when you cannot be there.

When your child IS?the bully:
• Be sure your child knows that bullying is NEVER OK.
• Set firm and consistent limits on your child’s aggressive behavior. 

• Be a positive role model.  Show children they can get what they want without teasing, threatening or hurting someone. 

• Develop practical solutions with the school principal, teachers, counselors, and parents of the children your child has bullied. 

When your child is a bystander:
• Tell your child not to cheer on or even quietly watch bullying. 
• Encourage your child to tell a trusted adult about the bullying.

• Help your child support other children who may be bullied.  Encourage your child to include these children in activities.

• Encourage your child to join with others in telling bullies to stop.