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Ask Mr. Dad: Stranger danger: Myths and facts

Dear Mr. Dad: Every time there's an amber alert or new story about a kidnapping or sex trafficking or the murder of a child, my kids panic – and, honestly, so do I. I have no idea how to keep my children safe, and the whole don't-talk-to-strangers thing seems pretty useless. Is there anything I can do to protect my children and reassure them?

Family

Living with Children: Parent portals shift homework responsibilities

Q: Our son attends first grade at the local public school. At the beginning of the school year, all the parents were basically told that we are expected to go to the school's parent website every day to keep up with our kids' homework assignments. In addition, the "Parent Portal," as it's called, also lets us know what we are expected to help with at home. In effect, we are being made responsible for what, in our estimation, is a teacher's responsibility. We are expected to know the material, monitor homework, and see to it that every assignment is not only done, but done properly. I've talked to several other parents who are not inclined to cooperate, but we all feel like we're caught between a rock and a hard place. Advice?

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