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Bullying seminar teaches kids and parents

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School is back for most kids around the Ark-La-Tex and a Bossier City Karate Academy wants parents and kids ready for potential bullying. After all, a little more than 3 million students are bullied each year, according to Dosomething.org. The academy held a seminar Saturday that informed kids and parents about how to protect themselves from bullies and their rights in such cases.

Geralyn Walker, an employee of the academy, says her daughter is no stranger to bullying. She experienced it after someone hacked into her Facebook account and left hurtful comments about friends.

 "She says they were being mean to her, and they were not believing that she did not do this," Walker said. "They would call her a liar."

Walker says the seminar's most important lesson for parents and kids is better communication between them. Only when someone talks can bullying be stopped or prevented.

"We need our kids to know that they are being listened to," Walker said. "There are too many kids that are feeling like it's the end of the world and they're taking their lives. That's too far."

The seminar teaches parents the warnings signs of bullying, like falling grades or bad moods, so they'll know when to approach their children and ask questions. Kids are encouraged to come forward to their parents and other adults if they're the victim of bullying. They're reassured something will be done to help.

"The child would know, first of all, someone is listening to me," Walker said. "Then, we're going to go forward until there is an answer for this because, in a lot of instances, kids are like, 'Nothing is going to happen, why should I bother?'"

The seminar also informs parents about their and their children's rights in bullying cases. Walker says the state's anti-bullying laws require schools to treat reports of bullying seriously and at once.

Pak's Karate hopes to hold another seminar. For information on how you can participate, call 318-752-2221.

 

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