School Shootings Affect Central Minnesota Students Too
In the last few weeks there have been 7 school shootings around the country. Even though its been nearly 15-years since the Ricori High School shooting, students live in fear, which is not what our kids should need to be worrying about when attending school.
Even though the most recent school shooting happened in Florida, kids all around the country are scared and worry about this happening to them, especially here in Central Minnesota.
It's been nearly 15-years since the shooting at Ricori High School in Cold Spring that claimed the lives of 15-year-old freshman Seth Bartell and 17-year-old senior Aaron Rollins. Nearly every child in high school is aware that this happened, even a decade and a half later, and it's a subject that needs to addressed.
Some would argue that we can control this problem with government intervention and changing gun control laws. Whatever the answer is, us adults need to focus on the mental well-being of our children that are living in fear every day they go to school.
Our kids see it on television and online, and hear it on the radio every time it happens, and each time it gets them thinking about it happening at their school. Here's a recent tweet from HealthPartners to help you talk about these tragedies with your children. As much as it may be an uncomfortable and touchy topic, it needs to be talked about:
The American Counseling Center wrote an article on their website that talks about how to cope with the aftermath of a shooting. To back up how it affects our kids here in central Minnesota, the ACC says:
The impact often extends to individuals who live far outside of the affected area with no personal connections to the event. This is especially true when the event is human-caused with the intent of harming others.
There's a number of great resources the ACC lists in the article, to deal with many issues that can arise following a violent or tragic event. It's well worth taking some time to look at.
I spoke with Bruce Watkins of Sauk Rapids-Rice Schools about how our central Minnesota schools are helping both students and teachers cope with the fear of a school shooting:
Regardless of your gun-related political views, or if you have children or not -- it's important to realize that it's a scary world for our kids right now. We need to help them understand how to not live in fear and just be aware of their surroundings, not just at school but also