The American Academy of Pediatrics wants doctors to take an active role in preventing bullying in schools and violence among dating teenagers.

The academy gives doctors tips for doing that in an updated policy statement being published in the July issue of its journal, Pediatrics.

The statement for the first time includes sections on bullies and dating violence, though the doctors group has published educational materials on the topics before.

The policy suggests a school-based program developed in Europe that emphasizes the role of bystanders in preventing bullying in schools.

Dr. Robert Sege of Boston Medical Center says the program teaches children that bullies are kids with problems and bystanders can protect victims.

On the Net:

Academy of Pediatrics: http://www.aap.org/