May 25, 2022 Message from the Superintendent

A Message from the Superintendent on School Safety (May 25, 2022)
Posted on 05/25/2022
HCPS LogoDear Families, Faculty, and Staff,

We are heartbroken by the horrific news of yet another senseless tragedy where innocent lives were lost during a school shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. We extend our deepest condolences and sincerest prayers to the families and friends of the victims, as well as the entire Uvalde community. Their devastating loss is unimaginable.

We understand that this incredibly sad and stunning news may cause you and your loved ones to personalize this and feel a wide range of emotions, from deep sadness and anxiety to fear and anger. As we all try to process the events that have quickly unfolded and as more troubling details will inevitably emerge in the days and weeks ahead, I want to reassure you that the safety and wellbeing of our students, faculty, and staff remain our highest priorities, without exception.

To this end, I want to share with you that we take a very serious and deliberate approach to our school safety and security efforts, and we remain vigilant. Each day, we work hand-in-hand with the Hanover County Sheriff’s Office, Hanover Fire-EMS, and other community partners to ensure we maintain a high level of preparedness for a wide variety of scenarios. We are grateful for their strong and long-standing support to help keep our schools and community safe. Together, we work promptly to address all concerns that are brought to our attention, no matter how small. In addition, we continuously evaluate and update our safety and crisis plans and invest in school safety measures at every school to further ensure that the unique needs of each campus are met. Finally, we put these plans into action by conducting numerous safety-related drills throughout the year to help ensure a high level of readiness among our students, faculty, and staff.

I also want to share with you that we have an incredible team of highly skilled school counselors who are specifically trained to support the emotional wellbeing of our students and staff. Please do not hesitate to call upon a school counselor, an administrator, a teacher, or any staff member if you are struggling and need additional support. We stand ready to help you and our precious students navigate through these dark moments, understanding that each person is unique and processes these unthinkable events differently.

We are all searching for answers that may never come in the wake of yet another tragedy. However, I sincerely hope this information provides you with some level of reassurance and confidence that the safety and wellbeing of our students and staff remain our top priorities every day. We take this privilege and responsibility very seriously, and we will work tirelessly to help ensure every student and staff member feels safe and supported.

Sincerely,

Dr. Michael Gill
Superintendent of Schools
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