Today, Monday December 17 is our first day back to school, although those who survived December 14 in Newtown, Connecticut will not be returning to school for quite some time and never to normalcy, ever.
We are trying to go about business-as-usual over here, reminding our children that their school, as well as the schools in which their parents both work are all safe places, and that tragedies such as these, Columbine and 9/11, are a tragic, scary, yet very rare occurrence in life.
As a family who spends a whole lot of time in all of the schools in our city, and in a neighboring city, this has been an incredibly difficult message to pass along.
However, we’ve had lots of help from fellow school administrators, school psychologists and friends along the way; sending emails, Facebook messages, and the like.
Our own school principal at our elementary school has been helpful in sending out many links over the past few days which give suggestions for how to speak to children about tragic events such as this one.
I know that although we’ve had our initial discussions, that the return to school may bring up other questions, fears, issues. We will be on the lookout, watching for any reactions, answering any questions that arise over the next few days and beyond, since this is not a tragedy which will go away, ever.
I thought I’d pass the links along to you as well, in case you find yourself in need of the answer to a question you thought you’d never have to address with your own kids. Thanks again to our wonderful school principal for being in constant touch with his school community throughout the weekend, for passing these links along to us.