How to Reassure Your Kids It’s Safe to Go to School
By Michele Fritz, Director of Marketing and Community Relations
It’s fall and for many of us it brings back the feeling of “new beginnings”, probably because it s the start of a new school year. As a child I remember being excited to start a new grade/school, meeting my new teachers,
seeing school mates again and wearing my brand new school clothes!
However, with all the media stories about so many school shootings, going back to school might be a “fearful” thing for some kids. So how do we address our children’s fears and anxieties? Experts say not to discourage
kids from talking about the events. In fact, psychiatrist Dr. Keith Ablow says, “Believe me, kids are thinking already about it. They need an adult to coax them to express their feelings and to tell them they are safe and
that we’re going to do the things we need to protect you.”
Dr. Alec L. Miller, a child psychologist with New York’s Montefiore Medical Center/Albert Einstein College of Medicine says parents should challenge the fear that school shootings are becoming more common. He says
while there have been several attacks in a short period of time, parents and educators should discuss how unlikely it is for such an attack to occur at school.
To guide parents through difficult discussions about school violence, the National Mental Health Association offers the following suggestions:
Source: National Mental Health Association
Weaver, J. (2013). Honest conversations can help ease your child’s fears about school safety. NBC News.
Retrieved from http://www.nbcnews.com
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