Sometimes, preschool abuse doesn’t start with the staff. In fact, some of the worst abuse at preschool sometimes comes from the children themselves. There has been a lot of news about bullying lately and, as the recent case in Ohio proved once again, bullying and abuse can turn tragic for everyone, even people who had nothing to do with it. The cases that get the most press are usually the most violent ones and, therefore, those cases that involve older children. For young children, however, bullying is just as dangerous.
How Bullies Work
Bullies are oftentimes abused themselves, though they’re sometimes not. They may be overindulged or have mental problems that are not their or anyone else’s fault. The problem is that they tend to vent their anger and, sometimes, sadism on people who are easy prey. At the preschool age, there are usually considerable differences between the children in terms of size and strength, due to the different rates at which people grow. This means that smaller children sometimes get the worst of it.
Bullying may be physical or mental. Bullies may beat their victims, push them around, steal their belongings or humiliate them. They may also tease them to the breaking point, resulting in the person who is being bullied being accused of having behavioral problems. This can be frustrating for the parents, especially when they don’t know where the problem is even coming from.
It’s the responsibility of the staff to watch out for the children that they’re in charge of. When they let bullying go unaddressed, it sometimes ends up in situations where a child is scarred mentally or physically in ways that require years of therapy to deal with. If your child has been the victim of preschool bullying, they need you to be the one who takes action on their behalf.
Start by talking to the staff. Let them know what’s going on. If possible, talking to the parents of the bully—talking, not yelling—may sometimes help to find ways to remedy the situation. They may not even know how their child acts when the child is at preschool. If nothing helps, talking to lawyer is an option. Any preschool that doesn’t do what they can to prevent your child and other children from coming to harm may well be liable to being sued for negligence, which sometimes results in large jury awards.