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Response to the May 24 Uvalde, Texas School Shooting
This message was emailed to all OSD Staff and families on Wednesday, May 25, 2022. If you didn't receive this information, contact your child's school to update your email address.
Good morning, Orting School District (OSD) Families and Staff.
We are shocked, saddened and wish the events yesterday at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, were not true. Our deepest condolences go out to the families and educators that so lovingly cared for the children and adults that lost their lives and the many more that were wounded. It goes without saying how incredibly saddened we are by these tragic events.
We expect to see this story circulate in news outlets for the next several days. With repeated coverage and exposure to the tragic event of a school shooting, our children may struggle with understanding why horrific events like this occur. There could be strong emotions, anxiety, or other impacts on their mental health. We strongly suggest letting children know that their feelings are valid and urge each of you to closely monitor their behavior for the next several days.
Also, we will increase visibility and administrative presence and have requested additional support from Orting Police Department for an increased presence as well. Counselors and administrators are on hand to help support students and staff in need. We encourage open discussion about our feelings. It is okay to feel angry, confused, or fearful. Our young people may not have the skills and tools to cope with this type of tragedy and we encourage a frank discussion about how it is inappropriate to make jokes or make light of this tragedy.
Some resources for staff and families to cope with this situation include:
- The National Child Traumatic Stress Network - Age-Related Reactions to a Traumatic Event
- American Psychological Association - Helping your children manage distress in the aftermath of a shooting
- National Association of Psychologists - Addressing Grief
Along with our students’ mental health, their safety is our number one concern. Our daily protocols with parents and visitors, such as checking in at the front office and receiving a visitor badge, help to ensure the protection of students and staff.
I am thankful for our amazing staff and our partnership with the Orting Police Department, Valley Fire and Rescue, and our other emergency responders. We regularly conduct emergency drills and appreciate School Resource Officer Boone for his support in this regard. If you have any questions or if you would like further information, you can email our Executive Director for Student Support Services, Chris Willis, at email@example.com.
With the combined help of our families, community members, and local law enforcement, we can ensure our schools are safe, effective, and caring learning environments together.
In partnership with you,