Go to the About This Course page to learn what each of the faces represents. Please read the scenario below and click on the response that seems most appropriate. Note that there is no perfect answer provided, and each response offers feedback and a learning opportunity. Please see COPA’s recommended response.

Why Does Bullying Continue?

SCENARIO: You have recently discovered that your child has been bullied at school. This was revealed through discussions with your child as they returned home on several occasions with physical injuries. You are not surprised when your child shares the identity of the child who did the bullying, as they are known by parents and guardians in the school as a "problem student". You have been communicating with the school, determined to advocate for appropriate follow-up strategies to ensure your child's safety.

1You immediately contact the principal and demand to know what punishments the student bullying your child will be receiving. You know the school has a responsibility to keep your child safe and you want to know what they are doing to uphold their obligation.

Advocating for your child’s safety shows that you take bullying seriously and conveys to them that you care.

Although it can be difficult to see it this way, bullying situations are learning opportunities. When young people who bully are harshly punished they are not given a meaningful chance to develop tools that they may lack.

Harsh punishments often lead to an escalation of violence and retaliation. The goal of any bullying intervention includes creating an immediate end to any violence and intimidation as well as long term changes in harmful behaviours.

2You immediately contact the principal and ask to meet to explore this situation further. The school has a bullying prevention plan but you’re not sure how it is used to address situations where bullying has already occurred. You want to understand the school’s approach and make sure that the child who hurt your child is being supported to make the necessary changes.

3You call the parents of the student who bullied your child. You set up a time for their family and your family to meet so their child can apologize to yours.

Explanation of the recommended response.