A Message From Mr. Lipp....(November)

Dear Canyon Creek Families, 

At Canyon Creek School the staff works very hard at enforcing a no tolerance policy against bullying. Our staff is always on alert, looking for signs of bullying issues. Although we try to eliminate the problem, I believe it is fair to say that bullying is very hard to stop and occurs all around us. From a school's perspective we will do everything in our power to assure that your child is safe and not getting bullied, but we really could use your help.

Often bullying behavior may seem rather insignificant compared to more violent types of incidents on schools. In fact, some people dismiss bullying as part of growing up or the rite of passage through the school years. The truth of the matter is that bullying is an early form of aggressive, violent behavior. Did you know that one in four children who bully will have a criminal record before the age of 30?

Bullies often cause serious problems that schools, families, and neighbors ignore. Teasing at bus stops, taking another child's lunch money, insults and threats, kicking and shoving is all fair game to a bully. Fears and anxieties about bullies can unfortunately cause children to avoid school, become depressed, and change their outlook on life.

Although anyone can be the target of bullying behavior, the victim is often singled out because of his or her psychological traits more than his or her physical traits. A typical victim is likely to be shy, sensitive, and perhaps anxious or insecure. Some children are picked on for physical reasons such as being overweight, physically small, or having a disability. 

So what can you do to help with this problem?

1. Listen to children. Encourage your child to talk about school, social events, other kids in class, so you can identify any problems your child may be having.

2. Take your child's complaints seriously. Looking into a seemingly minor complaint may uncover more sever problems. Children are often afraid or ashamed to tell anyone that they have been bullied.

3. Watch for symptoms such as withdrawal, a drop in grades, torn clothes, or a change in your child's typical behavior.

4. Most importantly tell the school if you think your child is being bullied, or is bullying. You often will see these signs before the school will. The sooner we hear about your concerns the fasted we can stop bullying behaviors, and help your child.

5. Don't bully your children yourself, physically or verbally. Use nonphysical, consistently enforced discipline measures as opposed to ridiculing, yelling, or ignoring your children when they misbehave.

6. Help your child learn social skills he or she needs to make friends. A confident resourceful child, who has friends, is less likely to be bullies or to bully others.

7. Teach children ways to resolve arguments without violent words or actions.

8. Teach children self protection skills-how to walk confidently, stay alert to what is going on around them, and to stand up for themselves verbally.

9. Recognize that bullies  may be acting out feelings of insecurity, anger, or loneliness. If your child is a bully, help get to the root of the problem. Seek out specific strategies you can use at home from a school counselor or child psychologist. 

With your help we can make a difference in the amount of bullying that is taking place in our school district and in our community. Please help us with these tips, and remember to alert the school if you think your child is being bullied. Call us at 656-4471.

Brent Lipp