8 Back To School Safety Tips

8 Back To School Safety Tips


Schools are gradually beginning to reopen across the country after a long summer break. From now through mid-September, public and private schools will be getting going, signaling the unofficial end to the summer season.

Parents are picking up supplies, getting their children outfitted for new clothes and helping their children return to a more predictable schedule. Not to be overlooked by anyone is the safety of these children on the way to and from school and while at school.

To that end, Universal Services of America —  a security technology company founded in 1965 — offers the following eight tips to help parents prepare their children for the new school year:

1. Walking to and from school. Map out the route your child will take and know who lives along it. While you don’t have to know every homeowner, it is important you research for any possible sexual predators that may live in the area. Also advise your children to stay on the preselected path and avoid any parks, alleys, fields, etc., where there aren’t a lot of people around. Find out beforehand if there will be crossing guards at the intersections, and arrange for neighborhood children to walk together. Ensure your child knows their address and phone number.

2. Riding a bike or scooter. Make sure they know and obey the traffic laws and wear proper safety equipment. Bike helmets, sturdy shoes and a backpack that isn’t overloaded will all help make the trip easier and safer for your little one.

3. Driving to school. If you plan on driving your child to school, make sure you see them enter the school yard or building before you leave.

4. Taking the bus. If your child will be taking the bus, instruct them to arrive at the stop early, stay out of the street while waiting and always keep themselves visible to the bus driver.

5. Dealing with bullies. Teach your child to stand tall, remain calm and walk away from difficult confrontations; if you suspect your child is being bullied, visit the school immediately and explain the situation to the principal.

6. Playground safety. Check out the equipment your child will be playing on and report any potential hazards. Remove the drawstrings from around the neck of clothing; any drawstrings at the waist or bottom of a garment should be trimmed to no more than three inches long.

7. Children need strict rules in place if they will be home alone. Set a check-in time for them to call and let you know they made it home, and make sure they understand to keep the doors locked once they’re inside. Additionally, you and your children should make plans beforehand for what they need to do in emergency situations, such as fires, accidents, earthquakes, etc.

8. Remaining healthy and drug/alcohol-free can be challenging for kids when faced with peer pressure; take this opportunity to speak to them about it. The Office of National Drug Control Policy has launched a campaign called Above the Influence to help you approach this topic with your children. You can access their information at: http://www.abovetheinfluence.com/heatmap/

Above all, help your kids enjoy the school year. Kids need to know that you love them unconditionally and feel safe enough to talk with you openly and honestly about anything on their minds.


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Categories: Consumer Tips

About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Matt's Musings", his personal blog. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and blogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".