My daughter is being bullied and neither the teacher nor the school administration is doing anything to stop it. What should I do?
My 6 yr old daughter is being bullied in school. She came home a few days ago with holes in her jeans because 3 2nd grade girls were smacking her in the butt and pushing her down at recess. When she told the recess teacher she told my 1st grader to do it back to them and ask them how they liked it!!!!!! She is also having problems with girls in her classroom and her teacher nor the principal will listen. This is the worst school I have ever experienced in my life and I am now concerned about my daughters safety and am going to go the school board to get them (I also have a 7 yr old son) transfered to a better environment. Does anyone have any suggestions on where to go from here?
I'm really sorry to hear that your daughter is being bullied at school! I think that it is understandable and reasonable that you are concerned about your children's well-being. There is a great deal of research to show that the consequences of bullying on victims are significant and severe in terms of emotional trauma. It is critical that the school staff take a very active approach to the problem and stop the bullying immediately. Many schools have developed thorough and comprehensive bullying policies. Clear policies typically have a description of the responses and consequences to bulling on-campus. Thus, everyone is in agreement as to how these sort of situations should be handled. As far as you know, does your children's school have anything like this in place? If not, perhaps the school board could take this on.
As far as additional measures, I think that you should make an effort to make yourself available to your daughter. Continue to listen and validate her feelings and reassure her that you are actively working on the problem, and you will do everything in your power to make certain school is safe for her. Write down and document the dates and times of bullying experiences and present this to school personnel. Listen to her feelings about her experiences of victimization. Help her develop active (but nonviolent) strategies for managing bullying in the moment. For instance, there is research to show that children who firmly yell, "Stop!" and walk away to tell a trusted adult often dissuade future bullying.
That sounds like a disturbing situation. Check out our articles on bullying and how you can help. As for going to the school board I commend you. I wouldn't stop there. I would also write a letter to the state department of education. You need to make sure you have documentation, because it will be your word against their's. Many of these departments of education will try their best to address the issue. I agree with Laura that most schools have strict policies against bullying, but just because it's a law doesn't mean people will follow it.
It is too bad the teacher and principal won't help you. When I taught I always made it a point to address these situations with everyone involved. I wish you the best. If you want to search for a new school we have our School Finder application at the top of the page. We have 10 states up already and hopefully it is one of the ones you live in. If not we will have the others up soon!
Sounds like that teacher wants the kids to work it out on their own, but that is rarely helpful. Schools need to satrt taking bullying seriously, and few do anything of any real consequence except to give parents of victims the runaround. Transfering your daughter could be an option but no guarantee. If your daughter's school has a behahior code of conduct or anti-bullying policy, let them know that you want it enforced. Go to the school board and to PTA meetings and let your voice be heard. Document all instances of bullying with what happened, the date, and any witnesses. Insist that the school begin taking this seriously...but realize that it will take a lot of effort on your part. Been there, done that.
Bullying is serious and will continue to be so until schools take it more seriously.