five 'back to school' safety tip reminders When the TV ads start talking about stationeries and you feel you have barely managed to avoid the asylum as it is all over- you know then that the carefree children’s dreaded time has come-the end of the sweet summer holidays and Back to School! While your children have to worry about having to face the shrill Alarm Clock Monster daily and how horrible their handwriting got after long interminable weeks of all play and no work, you have another level of worry-the safety of your children. Of course, if the proper precautions such as those mentioned below are taken, accidents can definitely be avoided:

  • An Agenda

Develop a family plan by going over everyone’s schedules or time tables and sticking memos on the fridge or wherever it is easily viewed by all family members, with additional information such as expected field days. Teach the children the basics of safety and dealing with threating situations, at school such as bullying or peer pressure and similar hazards to instigate self-confidence and to know the proper behaviour, as well as outside school.

  • The Trip

38% of all potential life-threatening situations happen to children as they walk to and from school. Be it on four- or two-wheel vehicles or on foot, the danger is still there when your children travels to and from school. Always drop and pick your children up as close to the school premises as possible and leave only once you see them inside. Otherwise, maintain a good relationship with the bus driver to ensure there is safe driving. The bus stop is itself full of unexpected dangers; ensure that your children keep a safe distance with the road. Of course, this would also mean he understands and obeys the Highway Code well, including the traffic signals, signs and officers. Designate the route that is safer, as well as “safe zone” including libraries or community centres. Warning them to be extra careful during bad weather is also important. As much as possible, ensure that he is accompanied by a trusted family, friend, or neighbour. The proverbial “Stranger Danger” phrase should be reminded every once in a while to prevent any dangerous encounter.

  • The Gears

If your child is old enough to use a bike or a scooter, he should also be old enough to learn about the necessary precautions involved such as sturdy shoes, knee caps, elbow caps and a helmet. Consider safety products, such as a mini first aid kit. They should equally know which toys or games they are allowed to carry to school or borrow from friends, in addition to the areas in school which might be unsafe and avoided.

  • An Emergency

Ensure that your children have the contact numbers of both parents- mobiles and workplace- and if possible a guardian’s, as well as emergency numbers such as the 911. The opposite is equally important- Keep the school’s or a teacher’s contact number as well as your children’s circle of close friends in case the former is not reachable.

  • The House

It is often overlooked, yet safety as home should not be neglected either, especially if both parents are away while the children get back. They should learn to inform one parent when they reach home. Make sure they know the rules concerning their access to gadgets, especially computers, and allowing outsiders to access the house. Needless to say window security and door security systems play an important role when children are Home Alone. The latter should be operative and the rest should be well secured, particularly if the children have their own sets of keys to enter the house. All in all, to ensure your children have a great kick-start to this year at school, on the way to and from, as well as when they are back home, the rules are simply to plan, prepare and protect!