NEWTOWN SQUARE–In the aftermath of the tragic Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, CT, Marple Newtown Superintendent of Schools Merle Horowitz offered the following statement to families and staff in Marple Newtown:
Our thoughts and prayers are with those families and educators who were involved in the terrible tragedy that occurred in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14, 2012. We mourn with the rest of the nation for the victims who lost their lives at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
In light of the tragedy there, I would like to share important information with our parents, guardians and community. We have a security system at all school district buildings to prevent intruders from entering. Our school district has a Crisis Management Plan and a Crisis Response Reference Guide that are updated annually after consultation with the police and fire chiefs of Marple and Newtown Townships. We have both District Level and Building Level Crisis Management and Response Teams. Our principals and assistant principals have students participate in various safety drills throughout the school year.
I encourage parents to talk to your children about the Connecticut school tragedy. Have a conversation with your children in an open and honest way to inquire what they know about the school shooting. Ask what questions they have so that you can allay their fears. Please reassure your children that Marple Newtown Schools are safe places to learn.
Our caring administrators, psychologists and guidance counselors are prepared to discuss students’ emotional reactions to this tragedy. They will work with all teachers to determine the best way to address our students’ concerns.
Here is a link to an excellent website of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the most trusted resource for pediatricians. The AAP offers resources to help parents, children and others cope in the aftermath of school shootings.
Here is another link to a helpful article and video about talking to your children/students about the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting from the Crisis Management Institute.
Please let us know how we can support you and your children.
Merle Horowitz, Ed.D, Superintendent
Find out how you can help the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting here.