When you send your child to school in Kansas City, you expect the teachers and administration to do what is necessary to keep her safe. There are strict policies about who can and cannot enter campus, dress code policies, attendance policies, plus many more that administrators have designed to promote a safe and productive learning environment. However, one of the major issues that seems to often go unaddressed is how the children treat each other, both on and off campus.
Harassment and bullying on school campuses have been making headlines on a more regular basis as these acts have ended in tragic events. While sometimes these instances of bullying and harassment go on where teachers and other adults do not see it, there have been several disturbing cases where not only are teachers turning a blind eye, but some are participating or even encouraging the mistreatment of students by their peers. Would you know if your daughter was a victim of bullying? Read below for signs of bullying that your child might display.
Bullying can be a hard thing to talk about for a victim. For example, if you ask your daughter how her day at school was, she might respond with something like “there was some drama” or other kids were “messing around” that day. If you seem to be getting standard responses like this, press for details and specifics. With the right kind of coaxing, your child might be more willing to open up to you.
If your child is not eating at school, there may be one of several situations occurring. Another kid might be stealing her lunch. Perhaps she is trying to win friends by giving her lunch away. Or, if weight is an issue, she might be skipping lunch to avoid teasing. Again, ask questions, but do so in a way that makes her feel safe about answering them.
Taking the long way home
In order to avoid after-school confrontations, some children might purposely miss the bus, get off the bus at the first possible stop, or take the long the way home. If your child’s after-school routine changes, it may be a sign that there is bullying taking place.
Lost or damaged belongings
While accidents do happen and sometimes things break, get torn or become lost, pay attention to the frequency of these occurrences. If your child is being physically abused by other students, it may be the cause of the latest tear in a piece of clothing or backpack. If there are consistent instances of lost or damaged items, it is past time to call the school and find out what is really going on. If the story your child tells does not match what you are hearing from other parents or teachers, it could be red flag that bullying is occurring.
There are many other signs that might point to bullying. If you have the slightest indication that your child is a victim, contact the school as soon as possible. However, if the school does not take appropriate action to provide a safe learning environment for you child and she suffers an injury due to bullying or harassment, you might be able to take legal action.