YUMA, AZ – Just three days after the shooting massacre in Newtown Connecticut kids nervously returned to school Monday.
For school's all across the country officials had to prepare on how to help children understand the horrific images they saw on T.V. KSWT News 13 wanted to know what exactly they plan to tell students. One school already taking action to help console students is Harvest Preparatory Academy. School administrators say they're main message is to comfort students to try to reassure them that school is still a safe place for them to learn.
Maria Culkins a mother of two tells News 13 "To see your child react to what they see on the news it's horrifying." Culkins had serious reservations about dropping off her 4-year-old daughter at school Monday morning. She says "For every parent in that school to think for a moment that their child might have been killed, parents shouldn't have to think about that. Parents shouldn't have to think about that when they send their kids to school." Culkins says while she's explained the Connecticut shooting massacre to her 4-year-old, she does not believe her little one fully understands what happened even though her daughter asked her if the children killed were now angels.
So if a mother has a hard time explaining this tragedy, imagine how difficult it is for school officials to carry on the conversation? News 13 went to Harvest Preparatory Academy to find out what exactly they plan to tell children to ease their fears. Dr. M.J. Ybarra the Chief School Administrator at Harvest Prep says, "We tell them that they are safe. We tell them they are in a safe environment here. We let them know there is place that they can trust. We have a psychologist on site we have a special education team working with our partners in area as far as counseling centers and things like that."
Harvest Preparatory Academy also held an assembly Monday to tell students if they see anything out of the ordinary at school or home to report it. They are also advising parents to do the same.
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