School bullying is nothing new — it may have even happened to you when you were a kid. But thanks to the rise of social media and all-too-easy access to digital devices, kids are facing more challenges from their peers than ever before.
Approximately one in five middle and high school students say they’ve been bullied, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. That includes being made fun of or called names, left out of activities on purpose, physically harmed or threatened with harm.
While you can’t control everything that happens on the playground or at school, it’s good to be aware of what to watch out for and how you can help.
Nathan Gauer, program director of No Bully, a nonprofit organization that aims to end bullying in schools, says parent involvement goes a long way towards preventing kids from being bullied or becoming a bully. “Make sure you're more involved with your child's school, and help create an environment where everyone is respected at home and you model good behavior,” Gauer says. “Teach your kids that their feelings are valid but that they should never resort to bullying or retaliation.”
So as a parent, how else can you prepare and keep your child safe? Read on for the top eight things parents need to keep in mind about bullying.