SCOTCH PLAINS/FANWOOD, NJ -- Scotch Plains-Fanwood K12 School Superintendent Dr. Margaret Hayes has issued a letter to parents in the aftermath of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Dear Parents,

We are deeply saddened by the tragic events that have taken place in recent weeks at schools across this nation and most recently at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Our hearts go out to the families, the school staff, and their community. Tragedies such as this are beyond anyone's comprehension and prompt us to hold our children even closer.

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During recent years, the Scotch Plains-Fanwood Public Schools have continually reviewed and improved our safety procedures and made facilities improvements to address safety concerns. We are fortunate to have an outstanding collaborative working relationships with the police departments in Scotch Plains and Fanwood who offer us guidance and support in these initiatives. Our schools regularly practice security measures, and while no one can guarantee against such senseless violence, we will continue to do everything within our power to provide a a safe and secure school environment for our students and all who are connected to our schools.

It is especially important when an event of this devastating nature occurs that we maintain a normal routines and be prepared to assure our children and the adults who care for them are working to keep them safe and secure. We all have questions, as will our children. Here are some resources that you may find helpful:

Coping with the Aftermath of Mass Shootings
www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2017/10/mass-shootings.aspx

In the Aftermath of a Shooting: Helping Your Children Manage Distress - 
www.apa.org/helpcenter/aftermath.aspx

Managing Your Distress After a Mass Shooting
www.apa.org/helpcenter/mass-shooting.aspx

As students return to school next week, if you have any specific concerns about your child, please reach out to your child's counselor, principal or me. 

Our deepest sympathies are with all of the families who have suffered such tragic losses. 

Please keep them in your thoughts.

Sincerely,

Margaret W. Hayes