Protecting your child against school bullies

70% of young people have seen bullying in their schools

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Many parents worry about bullies at school. Some parents say bullying has no limits and is more common than you may think.

John Requardt is a teacher at Putnam High School; he says bullying can include anything from spreading rumors to physical violence. He said, “With my students I’ve never seen it become physical, and mostly it’s around language students become comfortable with.”

The Stop Bullying website says more than 70% of young people have seen bullying in their schools, and it doesn’t just affect students emotionally; it can also distract their learning.

Parents today face an entirely new challenge, the internet. Over 80% of young people today said it’s easier to get away with bullying online than it is in person.

Athena Nader says her grandchildren are only five now and have dealt with school bullying, and having access to the internet later in life isn’t too comforting. She said, “All of the things with the internet, that’s the uncontrollable that you can be with your child and maybe a teacher would know but it’s the internet stuff, that’s real creepy and scary.”

For many students, it can be impossible to escape bullying. That’s why Jean Marvel, a teacher at Central High School told 22News she has helped students learn strategies to stop bullying in its tracks.

“You stand up to the bully in a way that’s not aggressive but it’s assertive and pretty much all of the time bullies back down when you do that, bullies aren’t used to being called,” said Marvel.

If you’re child is being bullied, you might not know it. The Do Something website says only 10% of victims tell their parents or a teacher. The warning signs of bullying can include unexplained injuries, sudden loss of friends or even lower grades.

For more warning signs, parents can head to http://www.stopbullying.gov/

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