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Counseling Information
By Robin Bergin 

 

Bully Prevention is a Top Priority at M.E.S.

We do not tolerate bullying at MES.  We appreciate you talking with your child about the prevention techniques listed below. 

1.  Talk with and listen to your kids--everyday.  Spend a few minutes each day asking open-ended questions about who they spent time with at school, who they sat with at lunch, or what happens on the way to and from school.  If you children feel comfortable talking to you about their peers before they're involved in a bullying event, they'll be much more likely to get you involved after.

2.  Spend time at school.  Research shows 67% of bullying happens when adults are not present.  Contact our office about getting cleared as a volunteer.

3.  Be a good example of kindness and leadership.  When you get frustrated at a waiter, a sales clerk, another driver on the road, you have a great opportunity to model effective communication skills.  Any time you speak to another person in a mean or disrespectful way, you may be teaching your child that bullying is OK.

4.  Learn the signs.  Most kids don't tell anyone about being bullied.  Possible signs of being bullied are frequent loss of personal belongings, complaints of headaches or stomache aches, wanting to avoid recess, poor attendance, etc.

5.  Create healthy anti-bullying habits early.  Coach your children what to do--kindness, empathy, fair play and taking turns; and what not to do--hitting, pushing, teasing.  Children also need to be taught to say no firmly and how to avoid being mean to others.  Teach your child if other kids are mean--to get an adult right away, tell the child who is teasing to stop, walk away, and ignore the bully. 

6.  Help us address bullying effectively.  At MES we aim to provide ongoing educational opportunities that help create a healthy social climate.  This means teaching our kids at every grade level good citizenship skills, empathy and self-advocacy skills.

7.  Establish rules at home about bullying.  Your children need to hear from you clearly that it's not OK to be a bully or to be bullied -- or to stand by and just watch other kids get bullied.  Make sure they know what bullying is, how it can be harmful, and who to report bullying behavior to.

8.  Teach your child to be a good witness.  Kids who take action can have a powerful and positive effect on the situation.  It's never a child's responsibility to put him/her self in danger.  Kids can often effectively diffuse a bullying situation by yelling "Stop! You're bullying!"  Kids can help each other by giving support to the victim, not giving extra attention to the bully, and/or reporting what they witnessed to an adult.

9.  Teach your child about cyberbullying.  This means electronically sending mean, rude, vulgar, or threatening messages or images.  It can also mean posting sensitive or private information about another person, as well as to pretend to be someone else. 

10.  Spread the word that bullying should not be a normal part of childhood.  Adults must understand that bullying does not have to be a normal part of childhood.  All forms of bullying are harmful to everyone; to the perpetrator, the victim, and the witnesses.