Mourning the Tragedy in Uvalde, Texas5/25/2022
Dear PPS Community,
As images have emerged of the 19 fourth-grade students and their teachers killed at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, they break my heart. As a parent and educator, hearing of this latest tragedy brings up heavy emotions for me. I share the grief and anger at the death of innocent children and selfless educators. This is a tragic and senseless act, and I keep each of the victims’ families in my heart.
This latest tragedy took place at a school in a predominantly Latino community. And this comes on the heels of the recent tragedies in Buffalo, targeting African American elders in a grocery store, and in Southern California where Taiwanese-Americans peacefully worshiped. And we are struggling with our own rampant gun violence on the streets here in Portland.
As school leaders, we continue to prioritize the safety and well-being of our students. We remain vigilant and are taking measures to make our campuses safer. I am grateful for the important work that our counselors, social workers, and frankly the role every adult plays, to make sure every one of our students feels safe and has positive relationships in school.
This tragedy is an opportunity for all of us to talk to our students about how much we care for them and how we want them to be safe. If you–or your children–need additional help, we urge you to take full advantage of the resources we have available at PPS, including counseling and access to many community resources. Please contact your school if you would like additional information or support.
If you are worried about someone hurting themselves or others, we encourage you to take action. Here are some resources you can contact 24/7, 365 days a year:
- If you witness an unsafe incident that requires immediate intervention, please call 9-1-1.
- If you have non-emergency information, please contact the Portland Police non-emergency line at 503-823-3333.
- You can also call the Multnomah County Mental Health Crisis Line at 503-988-4888
- Report concerning behaviors to the Safe Oregon tip line via text or call: 844-472-3367; email: firstname.lastname@example.org; or download the Safe Oregon app.
As we contend with this tragic news from Texas, we must, as a community, continue to work together to be vigilant in ensuring that our schools are safe and nurturing learning environments for every child and adult.