A message from Schools Superintendent John Hogan
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The most important thing that any parent can do is to remind the child that they’re safe, that they’re loved, and that they are supported. Children, like many of us, will instinctively ask “Why?”
It is very important not to focus on trying to answer the “why”, but to listen to our children’s feelings, to bring them back to how they are feeling and to what we can do to help them feel better.
According to the National Association of School Psychologists, parents can use the following tips to talk to children about tragic events:
· Be reassuring.
· Be a good listener and observer.
· Monitor your children’s access to news reports.
· Emphasize people’s resiliency.
· Highlight people’s compassion and humanity.
· Maintain as much continuity and normalcy as possible.
· Spend family time.
· Do something positive with your children to help others in need.
· Ask for help if you or your children need it.
Please contact your school’s counselor if you feel your child is in need of additional assistance or if you would like a list of additional community mental health resources. The following signs may indicate that your child is having difficulty, but with time the signs of stress should decrease. You may want to watch for some signs of stress in your child, such as:
· Changes in sleeping or eating patterns
· Marked changes in usual ways of behavior, including decline in school productivity and mood changes
· Physical symptoms
Superintendent Hogan provided his phone number and the numbers of district school principals.