Dear PSD Families:
I’m sure many of you have heard by now about Wednesday morning’s shooting of two administrators at East High School in Denver. We wish both staff members a full recovery from their injuries, both mental and physical, and stand in solidarity with East and the Denver Public Schools community as they process this tragedy.
Translations: Español Student Support | عربي Student Support
This incident hits home – not only because it happened in a nearby school district but because our Fossil Ridge High School boys' basketball team played East High in the state championships earlier this month. Our communities were connected in celebration of our student-athletes, as much as we are connected today.
As details continue to unfold on the news, online, and in conversations, children and young adults will be listening and experiencing a variety of emotions. These feelings may include fear, sadness, anxiety, anger, doubt, or numbness.
Our mental health team members would like to encourage you to listen to your child’s thoughts on this incident and others like it, to validate their feelings and assure them that they are safe right now. National Child Traumatic Stress Network guidelines for helping parents and guardians talk to young people after a shooting incident are available on the Crisis Response Recovery Services web page. Mental health professionals, including counselors, are available to support students; parents/guardians may call their child’s school to be connected.
Other community resources include:
- SummitStone’s Community Crisis Center, 1217 Riverside Ave. in Fort Collins: 970-494-4200
- I Matter Colorado (up to six free, virtual counseling sessions): imattercolorado.org or yoimportocolorado.org/ (la versión en Español)
- Child, Adolescent and Young Adult Connections (CAYAC): 970-221-3308
- 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline: 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress and crisis resources for your loved ones
- Text or call 988 to talk with a trained counselor
- Help in Spanish: 988lifeline.org/help-yourself/en-espanol
- Unfortunately, Larimer County is not immune to gun violence or its permanent impact on our youth. We have lost too many young people in our community. In 2019, a county coalition came together with the intention of reducing risk and enhancing our community’s safety.
- Get free gun locks and access resources on the Larimer County Juvenile Gun Safety web page.
- Video - It Only Takes a Moment video on YouTube (Juvenile Gun Safety Coalition, 2021)
It’s important for both students and their parents to know that there are many people in PSD helping to keep students, staff and visitors safe. These people include PSD Campus Security Officers, School Resource Officers and other law enforcement officials from Fort Collins Police Services, the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office, and the Timnath Police Department. It also includes our mental health and counseling professionals; safety and crisis teams; and the teachers, administrators and support staff who love and care about the children of PSD. Our families and other community partners play a critical role, as well.
PSD follows the nationally recognized Standard Response Protocols (hold, secure status, lockdown, evacuation, shelter). Visit the Safety and Security web page to learn more.
Your partnership to keep our children safe is greatly appreciated. It takes all of us to do this important work.