As a parent, one of the things that I trust is that the adults that are placed in my children’s lives, particularly in a school setting, are there to protect them. Some adults in the school may not think it is their job to be on the watch for bullying. It is worth checking your school to see who has received training on how to identify and report bullying.
We must demand that the school is training all the adults in the school to be on the watch out for bullying. It shouldn’t just be the teachers and administrators who are allowed to intervene. Even the para professionals, media specialist, janitors, etc., should be trained to deal with interactions that may be a bullying situation. Students need to know that there is not a hierarchy in the school, any adult can and will intervene and report a questionable situation.
This is also critical because children do bond with a variety of adults within a school. I have talked with my children on several occasions about identifying someone in their school that they trust. The answer at times has surprised me, and other times the answer was very predictable. The variety of adults children may go to when reporting a bullying incident is not limited to teachers or administrators. Some may bond with a para-professional, or a media person, or an after school sponsor. No matter who they talk to when reporting a bullying situation, students need to know they are going to get help.
If you have a child who is being bullied, you can find out to whom they are reporting the bullying, if anyone. I would also encourage you to find out the protocol at your school for adults to report bullying. Find out what kind of training they give to all adult staff members. It is important that your school understand the importance of safety that only comes when everyone is involved in creating a safe atmosphere. As parents, we must demand it for the safety of all children.