Superintendent of Schools Aurora Increases Safety, Provides Mental Health Resources
AURORA, Colo. (KDVR) – The principal of Aurora public schools has stepped up security and is providing mental health resources for students and staff after two shootings in one week. Six students were shot dead near Central High and three were shot dead in the parking lot at Hinkley High.
Rico Munn announced on Saturday at a peaceful prayer rally in Nome Park, where one of the shootings took place, that the campus would be closed during lunch for students. Munn extended that shutdown for the entire day with a few exceptions.
“Exceptions to this rule will include: students leaving for courses at Community College of Aurora and Pickens Technical College, students leaving school with the permission of a parent / guardian, students participating in sports / supervised activities and students participating in supervised field trips. Students must register with the main office before leaving campus, ”Munn said in a statement.
Pupils are not allowed to go to their car in the parking lot during school hours without permission.
The Aurora Police Department will be more present on and around the APS campuses.
All restrictions will remain in place until the winter break. Officials will then decide whether or not the protocol will continue for the next semester.
Mental health resources for students and staff
The safety of students and staff is not the only thing at issue, their mental well-being is also a concern. Munn reminds students that they can contact their school counselors to help them get through violent incidents.
The National Association of School Psychologists and Colorado Crisis Services at 1-844-493-8255 are other options for APS students and families.
APS staff can use the Employee Assistance Program to communicate.
Students and concerned parents can anonymously call advice and concerns through Safe-2-Tell at 1-877-542-7233.
Aurora’s advisor says more needs to be done
The manager of the Youth Violence Prevention Program was hired just over six months ago, but Aurora City Councilor Alison Coombs said more needs to be done.
“The main problem is that at this stage we only have prevention programs in place. We don’t intervene when we know children are already involved in gangs and other potential violent criminal activity, ”Coombs said. “And we don’t have any shutdown programs when we know something is likely to happen. “
An update from the program manager is scheduled for December 14th.
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