No one wants to see their child get bullied at school, but what should a parent do if they feel like they can't protect their child? Sending your kid off to school knowing there is a bully waiting for their arrival can be difficult, but knowing what to do to handle the situation can be even harder.
Here are some steps you can take, and some things you should avoid, to ensure that your child remains safe:
Do Not Approach the Bully's Parents
It may seem a logical first step, but talking to the bully's parents rarely ends well. Parents do not like to hear that their child is a bully anymore than they like to hear that their child is being bullied, so confronting someone with the notion that their child is a bad apple never ends well.
If the bully's parents are abusive, informing them of their child's bad behavior could be a trigger for more abuse for the child or the parents may even attack you.
Get All the Info
Before you do anything, be sure you know all the facts. Ask your child to inform you about what the bully is doing, if they are bullying anyone else, and where the bullying takes place. When you know all the information, a discussion with a professional will be easier.
Get the School Involved
The best help you can receive if your child is being bullied is from the school board. Talk with your child's teachers and the school principal about what is happening to your child and what can be done to stop it from happening again.
Be sure to get a written document outlining what will be done to address the bullying situation. While you may trust that the school principal will do their best to get the bullying to stop, having it in written form allows you to hold them to it if they do not perform.
Take Legal Action
In some cases, legal action is necessary to get your child's bullying to stop. If your child is being threatened, law enforcement should become involved as quickly as possible. Furthermore, if the school system is not performing to their agreed upon duties or is otherwise not addressing the bullying situation, you can file a Notice of Harassment. Contact a lawyer to discuss all of your legal options and find the best, fastest solution to your child's bullying problem.
It is important to know how to recognize bullying and what you can do to stop it. Do not allow your child to live in fear, and do not feel like you have no recourse for action. There are legal means to stand up against bullying if the institutions you look to for support cannot handle it.