Dear GRCSU parents, guardians, and staff members:
Like each of you, I was deeply saddened by the tragic news of the school shooting that took place yesterday at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. Please join me in keeping the students, staff, and families of the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District in our thoughts and prayers at this time.
It is paramount that our GRCSU schools should and must be a place where all of our students and staff members feel completely safe and secure. Each of our GRCSU schools has developed school safety plans and crisis response manuals for a wide variety of scenarios. Our GRCSU administrators and staff members routinely practice and review these safety and security drills with our students. In addition, we have begun implementing school security “Table Top” exercises. These exercises allow us to coordinate school safety efforts and responses with other emergency response agencies within our communities and district. Each exercise, drill, plan, and manual are routinely reviewed and updated to ensure our commitment to providing the safest precautions for students and staff members. Please know that the GRCSU is committed to the safety and security of our students, employees, and visitors at all of our schools and campuses.
We know that children and teens will process yesterday’s news in different ways. Counselors are available at each of our school buildings to assist students who may need some extra support. We strongly encourage any students to stop by our counseling offices at any time. Our school counselors are also a great resource for any parent/guardian who is looking for additional information or assistance in discussing this and other traumatic events our children may experience. Please feel free to reach out to your child’s counselor for additional information and/or assistance.
In the aftermath of this traumatic event, the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) notes that parents/guardians can help children feel safe by establishing a sense of normalcy and security and talking with them about their fears. The NASP highlights the following effective ways to talk with our children:
reassure children that they are safe
create a sense of safety by returning to normal, predictable routines as soon as possible
make time to talk/listen to their concerns and feelings
suggest they limit their use of media to lower their stress and maintain balance and perspective, and
realize that sleep difficulties are common and can lead to fatigue and poor participation.
observe your child’s emotional state
In addition, I have also provided some additional resources (please see attached) for additional ways to talk with your child about this and other tragic/traumatic events.
Lastly, we must remain vigilant against acts of violence in our GRCSU schools. It is important if you See Something that you Say Something, either directly to the school principal or to the VT Tip Line.
Call (844) 723-3488 or TEXT 274637, type in the keyword SAFE4VT and provide your tip.
Thank you in advance for helping us keep our GRCSU schools and campuses safe. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me or your building administrator. Have a good evening.