As summer ends and school begins, it’s crucial for families to follow a few back to school safety tips to keep the kids safe. In this article, we share some of the best tips to ensure the safety of your kids as they start attending classes.
Back to School Safety Tips for Parents
Communities have a lot of security measures to keep the neighborhood safe. For example, many conduct CPR training programs and even create a neighborhood watch for added protection. This makes it much safer for kids to roam around.
Kids are more vulnerable when they go outside the neighborhood. Parents have to carefully guide them to ensure their safety. This is important for children just starting school and those who have gone to school before. Whether your kids are traveling to school or engaging in school activities, keep these back to school safety tips in mind.
1. Practice Road Safety
Back to school road safety is arguably the most important thing to remember. After all, over 46,000 road traffic fatalities occur in the United States. To keep your kids safe, remember the following tips for various modes of transportation.
If your kids walk to school, remember to go through safety rules with your kids before the semester starts. Here are a couple of rules you can adopt:
- If available, always walk on the sidewalk
- Without a sidewalk, walk facing the traffic
- When crossing the street, stop to look left, right, and left again to see if cars are approaching
- Always cross the street at intersections or crosswalks
- Make eye contact with drivers before you cross the street
- Stay alert and avoid using your phone or other distractions
In addition, practice walking to school with your child if possible. This is especially important for parents with young children.
Children who ride bikes must practice riding the bike route before the semester begins. Parents should guide them through the route and teach them the road rules. Moreover, remember to teach your kids these safety tips:
- Always ride on the road’s right side, with traffic
- Keep a single file line while riding
- Always wear bright clothes and a helmet that fits properly
- When crossing the street, stop biking completely and walk the bikes across
- Use the proper hand signals
- Obey the stop signs and traffic lights
- Stay alert and keep distractions away
If you’re driving your kids to school, remember to follow these safety tips for parents:
- Make sure all the kids are wearing their seat belts and using age-appropriate car seats
- Children under 13 should ride in the rear seat
- Obey the speed limits for school zones
- Follow the school’s protocol for dropping off kids
- Make eye contact with the kids who cross the street
- Do not pass a bus that is loading or unloading children
- Stay over 10 feet away from the school bus so kids can safely enter and exit the vehicle
- Do not double park, as it blocks visibility for children and other drivers
- Stay alert, as kids are often unpredictable and may disregard safety threats
If your kids are of driving age, they may drive to school themselves. They should be cautious and remember to follow the rules of the road. You can also practice these safety tips to avoid accidents:
- If your teen is a new driver, practice with them every week even after they get their license
- Set the standard and drive safely so your teen can follow your lead
- Print a document containing the rules and expectations your teen should be aware of and have them sign it
2. Practice Bus Safety
School buses are arguably one of the safest modes of transportation for young kids. But, parents should still teach and help them practice how to ride the bus safely. Walk your kids to the bus stop and teach them how to properly enter and exit the bus. Also, teach them these school bus safety rules:
- Stand three giant steps (6 feet away) from the curb
- Wait for the bus to stop completely before approaching it
- If crossing the street is a must, remember to walk on the roadside until the kids are 10 feet ahead of the vehicle
- While crossing the street, remember to stay in the driver’s line of sight to avoid accidents
- Wear the seat belt at all times when inside the bus
Apart from these, make sure to check the school’s policy on food inside the bus. Eating may be problematic for students with allergies. It can also lead to infestations that can harm the students’ health.
Moreover, remember to coordinate with the school nurse and health personnel to prepare an emergency plan. This is vital for children with health conditions that could lead to unexpected emergencies.
3. Remember the Proper Use of Backpacks
Kids often need to use backpacks to carry books and school supplies. Remember to buy a backpack that’s ergonomic and sturdy. Moreover, remember to teach your kids how to wear backpacks properly. They should use both straps to evenly distribute the weight.
In addition, teach your child not to overstuff the backpack to avoid injuries and long-term health problems. It should not be heavier than 10% of their body weight. Lastly, try to avoid using rolling backpacks as they can pose a tripping hazard in crowded hallways.
4. Prepare Your Kids for Potential Bullies
Children pick on each other, whether physically, verbally, or socially. They can bully kids at the playground, bus, canteen, or even online. Here are some tips to follow to help your child avoid problems with bullying.
- Teach your child to ask adults for help when they’re in trouble
- Get to know the school’s officials, so you know who to talk to if your child is being bullied
- Encourage your children to make friends so they can stay protected
- Teach your child how to respond to bullies by training them how to:
- Use a firm voice to tell the bully they don’t like what’s being done
- Make eye contact with the bully
- Stay calm and stand tall
- Walk away
5. Create a Back to School Safety Checklist
There are a lot of school safety tips to keep in mind. It can be overwhelming not only for you but also for your child. To keep things manageable, we encourage you to create a checklist of all the key back to school safety tips. Give it to your child and encourage them to keep it in their bag so they can remember what to do.
Starting a new semester can be stressful for both kids and parents. After all, a lot can happen when children attend school. But parents can be better prepared when they remember these back to school safety tips.
You Can Also Read These: