Every school has some level of bullying. Pittsburgh area schools are no different. The responsibility of dealing with bullying is not just a teacher or principle, but everyone’s responsibility because you do not know who will seen the warning signs first.
Parents should look for signs not only that their child may be being bullied, but also that they are bullying others. Consequences can be devastating for either party in the end.
Even when these issues do not end in violence, the long term negative consequences can last a lifetime. Someone who has been bullied can lack self confidence and someone who is a bully can have trouble working with others and might lack empathy and care when entering adult life. In many cases this will hurt their ability for advancement and leadership positions in working situations. While some parents may think their kids are “strong,” the lack of compassion for others is not a good thing and can lead to many negative consequences.
How do you spot if your child is being bullied?
- Making excuses not to go to school, such as faking illnesses
- Unexplained loss or damage of money or items
- Lack of appetite
- Suspicious injuries
- Decrease in self-esteem
- More withdrawn, possibly self destructive behavior
And how do you know if your child is bullying others?
- Going to principle’s office
- Getting into physical and verbal fights
- More aggressive
- Speaks demeaning of others
- Blames others for their problems
- Worries about reputation and popularity
These are just some signs. Teachers, parents and other students should all be aware of the signs and report concerns. Silence let’s the problem escalate. Schools have professionals to help with these issues and you should report any concern to the school as soon as possible. For more information, read the government stop bullying site. This has a more comprehensive list and more information if you have any concerns.