Dear Parents and Guardians,
As educators and parents we are deeply saddened by the events which took place at the Sandy Hook Elementary School and our thoughts and prayers go out to all who have been affected by this tragic event. Your child’s education, safety, and emotional well-being remain our priority.
All teachers have been given a list of signs that may indicate distress in young children and adolescents. We will continue to provide a nurturing environment, to be active listeners, and to provide re-assurance that safety comes first. Our school Psychologist, Kathryn Wilk, School Counselor Celeste Aliberti, and School Social Worker Hally Tomasheski were available today to provide guidance to our professional staff and to meet with students. They will continue to be available to your children and to you as a family if the need arises.
We met Monday morning as an administrative team to review our safety procedures and will continue to strive to provide the safest environment possible for all of our children. Our school safety committee will be meeting on Tuesday to review our safety plan and make recommendations for improvement. As a result of our meeting this morning the following procedures are in place:
- All doors locked while school is in session and all visitors will enter through the main entrance to the school.
- Administrators or other school personnel with walkie talkies will be present at the start and end of the school day.
- All visitors to the building must first go to the office, sign in, and receive an identification badge prior to going to any other area of the building.
- All parents will enter through the main entrance and leave through the main entrance at sign outs.
- Parents of walkers will meet their students according to the walker procedures that we have been following. Middle school walkers will need to enter at the elementary side and come through the building.
- School safety drills continue to take place on a monthly basis and our hallways and entrances are monitored with security cameras.
We are proud of our relationship with the Holland Township Police Department. They are often a visible presence in our school at the beginning and end of the day. They also visit our lunchroom and walk our hallways. Members of the police force have been present for school safety drills. Chief Harris is a member of our school safety committee. We continue to work with our police department to keep our children safe.
It takes all of us working together to provide the safest learning environment possible for the children of Holland Township. If you have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact us. I am attaching information from the National Association School Psychologists to assist you in talking to your child about this tragic event.
Emil Suarez, Superintendent
Nancy Yard, Principal
Kathleen Stannard, Supervisor of Special Services
Abby Postma, Business Administrator