One of the most momentous moments in a child's (and a parent's!) life is when they start school for the first time. This is both an exciting and scary time for both children and parents but there are ways to navigate it while keeping your sanity and keeping your kiddo safe.
Sending kids off to school is exciting and some of these dangers include:
2) Violent crime both inside and outside the school
3) Strangers with bad intentions
When it comes to traffic, children who walk to and from school are particularly at risk, but accidents can happen on school property as well. Get together with other neighborhood parents and kids to create a buddy system that ensures no child walks to school alone. Teach children to use crosswalks, and if possible, only crosswalks with crossing guards. Teach them to always look both ways, even if they are in a crosswalk. Also, teach them the meanings of street lights and street signs and the importance of not participating in horseplay when near roads or parking lots. While at school, it is very important to be careful around parked school buses and cars picking up and dropping off students at busy times.
While violent crime in schools has risen in the past decade, children should be aware of the possibility and how to protect themselves in dangerous situations. Make sure they learn their way around the school early on. They will likely receive orientation concerning fire and active shooter drills but they should continue to be vigilant and knowledgeable about how things work in the building such as what doors are locked at what times, what various alarms mean and where to go if something bad occurs.
One danger that has always lurked for children no matter where they are, is strangers with bad intentions. The same rules that always applied still apply today. Children should be taught to never talk to strangers, don't trust someone who says they have a gift, never get in a car with a stranger, run to the nearest safe place if a stranger approaches uninvited and always report suspicious activity to an adult.