Its offi­cial.  The kids have returned to school.  As they set­tle into their new class­rooms and timeta­bles they will begin to make new friends and get ready to learn and dis­cov­er many new things.  Even though the kids have returned to school, that does­n’t mean the back to school prepa­ra­tion has end­ed for par­ents.  In fact, it’s only just begun.  While the kids are in school, there are a few things that par­ents need to be aware when it comes to the well being of their chil­dren.  Some things to keep an eye on:

Stress and Anx­i­ety

Com­mon amongst high school stu­dents and under­grads, stress and anx­i­ety can have a huge impact on your child’s life.  At this point in their lives, high school stu­dents are stressed about their grades, want­i­ng to make sure they score the top marks to get into the school of their choice.  On the oth­er hand, under­grads are also stressed out not only about their grades but also deal­ing with pres­sures when it comes to look­ing for a job.  Stress is not a bad thing, as it can be used as a moti­va­tor how­ev­er too much stress can have a last­ing effect on your child.  From sleep­less nights to the onset of depres­sion, excess lev­els of stress can change the behav­iour and health of your chil­dren.  To pre­vent the dam­ag­ing effects, talk to your child about stress and anx­i­ety and the ways that they can deal with it, such as talk­ing to some­one or tak­ing part in a unre­lat­ed activ­i­ty.  Remem­ber to keep in touch with them through­out the school year and try to get involved in their stud­ies.  This way as a par­ent, you have a bet­ter under­stand­ing of the work­load your chil­dren are han­dling and it gives you the oppor­tu­ni­ty to make sure they aren’t tak­ing on more than they can han­dle.


School yard bul­ly­ing has been around for years, with chil­dren pick­ing on chil­dren dur­ing recess and through­out the school days.  How­ev­er when chil­dren left the play­ground, they usu­al­ly left the bul­ly­ing there.  Unfor­tu­nate­ly that’s not the case any­more.  With the rise of tech­nol­o­gy and the intro­duc­tion of social media, the bul­ly­ing now fol­lows chil­dren at home.  Yes, we are talk­ing about cyber­bul­ly­ing.   Accord­ing to the Oxford dic­tio­nary, cyber­bul­ly­ing is the use of elec­tron­ic com­mu­ni­ca­tion to bul­ly a per­son, typ­i­cal­ly by send­ing mes­sages of an intim­i­dat­ing or threat­en­ing nature.  Cyber­bul­ly­ing has now become promi­nent amongst all school chil­dren, from mid­dle school to post sec­ondary.  What makes cbyer­bul­ly­ing worse than school­yard bul­ly­ing is that those fac­ing it may be reluc­tant to admit to being the vic­tims of cyber­bul­ly­ing.  This allows for the bul­ly­ing to go unno­ticed by par­ents and pro­vides the oppor­tu­ni­ty for it to get worse.

If your child is active­ly using social media, let them know what cyber­bul­ly­ing is and how to spot it. Remem­ber to teach your chil­dren the prop­er ways to use social media or oth­er dig­i­tal plat­forms so that they do not become a cyber­bul­ly.  As a par­ent, allow for open com­mu­ni­ca­tion between you and your child on a reg­u­lar basis.  As it was said before, those fac­ing cyber­bul­ly­ing are reluc­tant to admit it so talk­ing to your child about their day or the activ­i­ties going on in their lives allows for you to get a sense of whether or not your child is being bul­lied.


As stu­dents return to class, safe­ty is a year round con­cern.  From the gen­er­al play­ground safe­ty to walk­ing home alone, you want to make sure that your chil­dren are safe any­where they go.  If they’re walk­ing to school, remind them to look all ways and wait for traf­fic to come to a halt before cross­ing the street.  Also, remind them nev­er to text while cross­ing the street.  Tex­ting and walk­ing is just as dan­ger­ous as tex­ting and dri­ving as it impairs your vision and reac­tion time.  For younger chil­dren on the play­ground, remind them of play­ing safe and that shov­ing and push­ing are not accept­able.  For old­er stu­dents liv­ing on cam­pus this year, let them know that they can have fun but to remem­ber to use their bet­ter judge­ment.

Chil­dren spend an aver­age of six hours a day in school, not includ­ing post sec­ondary stu­dents.  With so much time being spent in the class­room, it’s impos­si­ble for par­ents to make sure their chil­dren are safe 24/7.  As par­ents, by pro­vid­ing the basic back to school safe­ty tips, you’re allow­ing for your child to have a safe and fun school year.  With 195 days of school this year, it’s bound to be a fun and mem­o­rable year.

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Allan Baum
Security Industry veteran with over 30+ years in the industry. Founded family owned and operated Protection Plus in 1994 with his wife and has overseen its growth since. In addition to working with his wife and son, Allan has assigned the role of Chief Canine Officer to his trusted dog Waub, who joins him at the office every day.