Tragedy is an event that causes great suffering, distress and destruction. This weekend we have all experienced a range of emotion and grief associated with this unbelievable and senseless tragedy that occurred in Newtown, CT. On behalf of Fox Hill School, I extend our sincerest sympathy and love to all who may been affected personally by this event both directly or indirectly. It has been a heart wrenching weekend as we watched or listened to the tragedy unfold not fully understanding how it will affect us in the days to come. Our community is a kind and caring community and together we will work through the pain and the grief we may feel as a result of this tragedy.
Our school psychologist , Mrs. Settelen and our school guidance counselor, Mrs. Dwyer and I are available to talk to you or to your child at any time it is needed. If necessary, communicate to your child that our school is a very safe place and every day everyone works to ensure the highest level of safety at school. On Monday and throughout the week, each school day will represent a typical school day and our goal is to maintain normalcy, routine and structure implemented with care, kindness, sensitivity and hope for better days ahead.
Another goal is to give our children a wonderful week that ensures their happiness and their safety. Our plan is to be sensitive and mindful of the different levels of awareness children may have about this event or the different development levels of understanding, but please know we will not discuss the events that happened in Newtown with students. Our plan is be strong, remain calm, confident and positive as we interact with children throughout the week. Our plan is to be there for you and for your children in any way possible and parents will be contacted if your child is having a difficult day.
I have provided information below from experts around the country that provide support and comfort as we work through understanding how to deal with this event:
- NASP has additional information for parents and educators on school safety, violence prevention, children’s trauma reactions, and crisis response at
- Children and Firearms
- Children and Grief
- Understanding Violent Behavior in Children and Adolescents
- Disaster and Trauma Resource Center
- Additionally, PBS has an article with flexible suggestions for answering kids’ questions about the news, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) also has tips for students, schools, adults, families, responders and health professionals in dealing with tragedies: