Uvalde, TX Message to Families

Uvalde, TX Message to Families

May 25, 2022

Dear STGRSD Community:

I am reaching out this morning in the wake of the Uvalde, TX tragedy. As we join the nation in expressing deepest sympathies to the students, teachers and families who have been impacted by the Texas school shooting, we are all deeply affected by this tragedy. As educators and parents, we can relate to the horror of this event and are challenged when trying to find the words to discuss this with the young people in our lives. We know that events like this are not only tragic and painful, but can often lead to anxiety and fear felt by our entire community.

We want to assure you that safety is our highest priority. We continue to work closely with the Massachusetts State Police, School Resource Officer and local law enforcement to review and update our protocols and responses to these types of situations. We work collaboratively with the Southwick Police Department to monitor any potential threats and practice emergency drills.

We understand that our students and staff may need additional support during this time and want to reinforce that we have support services in place and available to those who may be struggling with this tragic event. Our staff and counselors will be available for students in school as needed. Please reach out to one of your child’s teachers or counselors if you feel your child needs specific support in processing this incident. Below are links to additional resources that might support you as you process this event with your child(ren). 
National Association of School Psychologists: Talking to Children About Violence: Tips for Parents and Teachers
Common Sense Media offers How to Talk to Kids About School Shootings by taking an age-based approach to discussing news of school shootings with kids.
The American Psychological Association (APA) recommends honesty with children – acknowledging that bad things do happen, but reassuring them with the information that many people are working to keep them safe, including their parents, teachers, and law enforcement. The APA also advises limiting children’s exposure to news coverage following such traumatic events. 
Our partnership with Care Solace will also assist in connecting staff, students and their families to mental health support: https://stgrsd.org/cms/one.aspx?portalId=914292&pageId=55541613

We hope that you will help in reassuring your children that we have safety protocols in place and that additional support is available if needed. We always encourage all members of our community to speak up when they have a concern. Please feel free to contact a building administrator if you have questions or need additional support.

Jennifer C. Willard
Superintendent of Schools
Southwick-Tolland-Granville Regional School District 

Southwick-Tolland-Granville Regional School District