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Resources for Families Following the Tragedy in Uvalde

May 26, 2022

Dear Columbia Academy Families,

We are shocked and saddened by the horrific act of violence that unfolded Tuesday at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. These events weigh heavily on our hearts and minds. The trust you place in us each day for the safety and care of your children is not a responsibility we take lightly.

It is important to recognize that everyone plays a role in school safety. Students, parents, faculty, and staff are encouraged to be observant and let a teacher or administrator know if they see or hear something that makes them uncomfortable, frightened, or if they hear threats of a dangerous behavior.

Traumatic events such as this can bring about many emotions in both adults and children and can lead to heightened levels of stress, sadness, anger, and fear. Your child may come to you with questions, fears, or for reassurance. Below are some things that may help you, as parents, to meet your child where they are at mentally and emotionally.

  • Start by talking to your child about safety issues and empower them to talk about their concerns and express their feelings. Be honest about what happened, in an age-appropriate way, and reassure your child that many people are working to keep them safe, including their parents, teachers, and local police. Answer your child’s direct questions without offering additional information.
  • Monitor exposure to news coverage. Parents should be alert to any signs of anxiety that might suggest that your child might need more assistance.
  • Know the signs. Look at their school performance, changes in relationships with peers and teachers, excessive worrying, sleeplessness, headaches or stomachaches, not wanting to go to school, or loss of interest in activities they used to enjoy.
  • Engage in positive self-care so that you can be at your best to support your child.
  • Connect with your support network of family, friends, and educators. Seek professional support if needed.

As a community, our students, educators, and parents must continue to be vigilant and aware of the information that our children are exposed to. You may benefit from the below resources in finding the best way to speak to your child about this senseless act. As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out to a member of our admin team or your child’s teacher with any concerns.

https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources-and-podcasts/school-safety-and-crisis/school-violence-resources/talking-to-children-about-violence-tips-for-parents-and-teachers

https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources-and-podcasts/school-safety-and-crisis/school-violence-resources/school-violence-prevention/responding-to-school-violence-tips-for-administrators

https://www.commonsensemedia.org/articles/how-to-talk-to-kids-about-school-shootings

Sincerely,

Patti and Tom Kincaid