by David Maas
MAPLE PARK—After hearing from parents of students in Kaneland schools, the Maple Park Police Department decided to hold a series of anti-bullying workshops, free of charge, to help educate students and their parents about bullying and how to help reduce it.
“We have had parents come to us about bullying at school or on the buses,” Officer Andy Rissman said. “They wanted to know if there was anything we could do about it.”
After hearing from some of these parents, the Police Department decided to put on a series of anti-bullying workshops.
“We decided to hold three separate workshops,” Rissman said. “The first night will be for the parents of students, the second will be for students aged 6 to 10, and the third will be for middle and high school students.”
By holding several different workshops, the program will be able to better focus on different areas of anti-bullying for the different groups.
“The parents will be educated on what to do when a child comes to them about bullying, and the students will be educated on what to do when they see bullying, as well as the effects of bullying someone,” Rissman said.
The officers will be doing this by showing videos, as well as having speakers.
“We are going to have a few different speakers,” Rissman said. “Tom Scott, a self-defense instructor, will talk about the importance of self esteem, (plus) Nicki Bajaj, an attorney, and representatives of the Kaneland School District, who the parents and students can talk to directly.”
The workshops will take place over three nights. The first, for the parents, will be on Monday, March 12. A workshop geared for students ages 6 to 10 will be held on Tuesday, March 13, and one for middle and high school students will take place on Thursday, March 15. All workshops will start at 6:30 p.m. on their respective nights in the village offices of the Maple Park Civic Center.
“These workshops are completely free, and we are going to have some fun,” Rissman said. “It’s important we educate as many people as we can, so we can stop bullying in our schools.”