Tuesday, November 23, 2010

What should I do about thefts at my child's school?

Ms. Dorothy,
We have had a problem with thefts at my daughters school-- from backpacks, to coats, to snacks out of her lunchbox. I have written her name on EVERYTHING she takes to school, but this still isn’t working. I know I’m not the only parent at the school who has had problems with this issue. What can I do to make sure my kid’s stuff stops getting stolen!?
- Concerned Mom

It's always good practice to put your child's name on things. Very often children will mistake one lunch box for another, and a name helps to get things back to the original owner.
If this is a problem that is occurring throughout the school, be sure to bring it to the attention of the administration so that it might be addressed school-wide.

When it comes to your daughter, think of this as an opportunity to establish and affirm your values about property. Talk about how full and rich her life is, and how she will never want for anything that matters.
Help her to understand that people who fear the loss of things sometimes give themselves the right to take from others. How lucky you are to know your child will never be the one feeling so neglected that she steals to fill her needs.

Pack her an extra snack to give away. Bring the jackets she has outgrown to school. When she gets a new backpack for the new school year, donate the old one.

Your participation as a volunteer and PTO member will give you a great avenue to brainstorm ways to address the problem with the school community.

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