Are you among the one in three parents who are worried about bullying and cyberbullying this school year? Bullying is a serious problem that knows no race, class, age or ability. One in four kids has been bullied and approximately 15% have been bullied electronically. Feel helpless? Here's what you can do:
Bullying Prevention
  • Be supportive. Don’t assume your child provoked the bullying and don't criticize. Tell him or her that bullying is NOT their fault, that they don't deserve it, and that you are glad they told you about it.
  • Check your emotions. A parent’s protective instincts stir strong emotions. Keep your cool.
  • Contact your child’s teacher or principal. Get a copy of their anti-bullying policy, tell your child’s story and ask for help.
  • Never tell your child to ignore the bullying. If they feel safe and comfortable, encourage them to tell the bully that it is mean and needs to stop.
  • Ask your child what he or she thinks can be done to help and offer assurance that you’ll think about it
  • Do not encourage fighting or bullying back. This can lead to more violence.
  • Expect the bullying to stop. If your child and/or school officials can't resolve it, contact your county's superintendent or the US Dept. of Education.
Cyberbullying Prevention
  • Monitor online, text and app use. Learn about the sites your child likes. Try out the devices they use. Establish rules about what they are permitted to do when they’re online.
  • Encourage your kids to tell you immediately if they, or someone they know, is being cyberbullied
  • Teach your child to safeguard passwords and other private information from prying eyes. Also, log off when they walk away from the computer or their phone.
  • Set up privacy controls. Restrict access of their online profile to trusted friends only. 
  • Pause before you postTell them not to share anything that could hurt or embarrass themselves or others.
  • Teach them not to be a cyberbully. By treating others badly online, they are reinforcing that the behavior is acceptable. 
  • Ask your child's school if they have developed a technology policy.
The Family Tree leads Maryland in preventing child abuse, connects caring communities, and builds strong families to improve society for generations. We create powerful changes in families that grow outward to positively impact their community and our state. For more parenting tips, visit or follow us on social media.
Twitter Facebook Instagram YouTube