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Reflecting and responding to yesterday’s events in Washington, D.C.

I am deeply disturbed by the events in our nation’s capital yesterday, and the troubling situation continues to weigh heavily on my mind today. I have recorded a community message, which I hope you’ll view – or read the transcript.

Supporting conversations with your children

PBS’s mission includes a call “to respect the uniqueness of each person.” This moment in our nation’s history underscores the importance of this commitment and is a resounding call to action. We teach our kids how to have healthy discourse, be respectful of each other, and stand up with courage and respect when things go wrong.

Our children are also seeing or learning about the displays of violence, cowardice, and unpatriotic acts that have occurred this week. They may want clarification to help them understand what they are being exposed to. To help support these conversations at home, here are some links to informative resources. In addition, the organization Teaching Tolerance recommends a four-step process to follow when supporting children:

  1. Listen: Ask good questions, and listen to kids, try to understand their concerns.
  2. Protect: Work to make students feel safe and protected by establishing norms and guidelines for conversation, as well as requiring facts and legitimate information sources.
  3. Model: Demonstrate a calm demeanor and reasoned approach to conversation and disagreements. Encourage civil discourse and a sense of calm.
  4. Take care of yourself: Protecting and supporting children can be a heavy burden; take some time to check in with your own feelings and find support and backup as needed.

As a school community, we are here to support each other. Please reach out to members of my administrative team or me if you need further resources. Thank you for your commitment to our school’s mission and core values.

Transcript

Resources

Facing History and Ourselves:
Home pageAbout the organization“Responding to the Insurrection at the U.S. Capitol”

National Association of School Psychologists
Home pageAbout the organization • “Talking to Children About Violence: Tips for Parents and Teachers”

American Psychological Association
Home pageAbout the organization“How to talk to children about difficult news”

Teaching Tolerance
Home pageAbout the organization“When Bad Things Are Happening”

Common Sense Media
Home pageAbout the organization“Explaining the News to Our Kids”

Children’s Hospital of Orange County
Home pageAbout the organization“Talking politics with your kids: Advice for parents”

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