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Re: sadness..........


Date: Sat Sep 14 2002 - 10:45:11 PDT

Dear Gabrielle,
I am sorry to hear about the sad news at your school. My school has suffered
through a couple of tragedies last year and I will tell you how we handled
In March a 4th grader was struck and killed by a car right after school on a
Friday afternoon. He was on the sidewalk and the driver (about 80 years old)
must have blacked out or something. His friends witnessed it and one of the
teachers on his way home saw it happen. On Monday morning there were
counselors from all over the system at our schools as well as the school
psychologist to offer support for students who needed it. Because it happened
on a Friday many knew what happened and talked about it with their family
over the weekend. It would have been even tougher to handle if it happened
during the week. Kids wrote letters to the boy's parents, drew pictures of
him and talked about him with their teachers. We were very open with the
whole event. On another sad note, one of the 4th grade teachers lost her long
battle with cancer at the young age of 33. She was a very special teacher and
loved by all. This was in June. The school and students handled this in a
similar manner. The principal and guidance counselor went to the classes and
told them what happened. It's important to allow the students to grieve in a
safe place and offer as much support and comfort as possible. Let them
express themselves. It's okay to cry. I cried with some of my 4th grade
classes. I just couldn't help it.
At the end of ther year a tree was planted in honor of the student that
passed away (a donation from a family)
I am sorry your school has to go through such a sad time.

Take care,