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It’s sad but true. Bullying exists, and it has for a long time.

It’s in public and private schools. It’s on the playground, the playing field, online and on cell phones via text messaging.

The tactic can, and has, produced tragic and violent results.
Remember Columbine, the middle school shootings in Arkansas and others
in Washington state over the past decade? You can’t forget other
stories in which students so depressed over being bullied that they
took their own lives.

Dropping my daughter off at preschool recently, I glanced at the
notices by the door informing parents of upcoming events. One was a
flier with information about a presentation being hosted the Mental
Health Subcommittee of Schuylkill County’s VISION on Oct. 13 in the
Pottsville Area High School auditorium.

Rosalind Wiseman, The New York Times best-selling author of "Queen
Bees & Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip,
Dating and Other Realities of Adolescense," will speak on the topic of
bullying, from ways to intervene to addressing and resolving bullying
situations.

You would think that parents of preschoolers wouldn’t have to think
about this subject — at least not yet. However, written at the top of
the flier was, "Parents: Bullying starts in the pre-k years. It is not
too soon to learn how to manage the issue!"

It’s disturbing, but as the mother of a 5-year-old I can’t say that the bullying issue hasn’t crossed my mind.

I think every parent sends their child to school with high hopes.
They hope that the child learns all he can to make the most of his life
and becomes a well-rounded person. They hope that he makes friends,
gets good grades, hangs out with the right people and makes good
choices. They hope that their child can stand his ground when it comes
to difficult situations with other children.

I hope these and more for my daughter as she continues her education. So far, I think she’s off to a good start.

I don’t think any parent wants their child to be bullied.
Furthermore, I think every parent should hope that their child doesn’t
become a bully. If they do, the parents should take the proper steps to
correct the behavior before it gets worse.