Dear Hopewell Students, Parents, and Community Members:
As our region unites to support the families and communities impacted by Saturday’s tragedy at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Squirrel Hill, I wanted to reach out to you this morning as we begin another week of school or work.
In light of Saturday’s horrific events, I feel compelled to share some resources or thoughts as we help our children, families, and neighbors process this unfathomable incident occurring in our hometown. These senseless acts impact all of us in very different ways. With the presence of social media and the national news coverage, it will be important to address the questions and emotions that accompany tragedy.
As a school community, we need to focus on the positive. By focusing on the helpers, those who share kindness, and those who care and support one another, we are instilling and prioritizing the importance of kindness. Fred Rogers once said, “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ Kindness and helping go hand in hand, and we only need to look to our students, parents, and staff to see kindness and helping in our schools and community.
There are helpers in our own Hopewell Area School District to assist our students process this tragedy. We have school counselors, Crisis Teams, and a cadre of dedicated teachers and staff who are here for our students, parents, and colleagues. Should there be a need, don’t hesitate to reach out to the school for support.
The following may also be helpful to parents when discussing the weekend’s events with children: https://www.nextpittsburgh.com/latest-news/how-to-talk-to-your-kids-about-the-mass-shooting-in-pittsburgh/
Hopewell Area School District has a long-standing reputation of serving others. We will continue this tradition as needs are identified by our Squirrel Hill community. For now, we can choose kindness and build or strengthen relationships with one another, one person at a time.
At Hopewell, we will help our Pittsburgh region by sharing “HOPE” that is the fabric of our community and school district.
With great hope and kindness,
Dr. Michelle Miller Superintendent