Our prayers are with the community of Sparks, Nevada. The news of another school shooting sends shock waves through every community. Appreciable anger, fear, anxiety, worry and confusion are often woven into our immediate reactions as no school, no community is immune from violence or disruption. And while news of terror and violence appear at our doorsteps more frequently as a result of an increasingly shrinking and polarized world and advances in technology, it doesn’t mean we throw our hands up in surrender.
All Saints’ is a safe place, and while we have had clear safety and crisis measures in place for years, we do not take any of this for granted. We review our policies and procedures carefully with our faculty and staff, and we have forged strong relationships with local and national safety consultants and law enforcement who help us assess and improve our campus security.
All that being said, it is probably most important to know our families. The strength of our community is built on mutual respect and the ongoing cultivation and expectation of a decorum of civility. Our basic expectation is respect for oneself, for another and looking out for the health and welfare of ALL in our community.
Our baptismal covenant reminds us that when we challenge each other to “…seek and serve Christ in all persons,” our response is “We will, with God’s help.” This is a clear and unequivocal reminder that we are expected to treat each other well and look out for each other; and when someone is not doing well, we need to assist, intervene or ensure their health and welfare and that of others is addressed.
It is important to remind everyone that this is a COMMUNITY responsibility, not merely the School’s. The home and School are partners in this relationship, and it is only with this mutual respect and expectation of support, guidance, planning, follow-through, and, yes, prayer that we will continue to maintain a safe, welcoming, uplifting community of excellence in and out of the classroom. We also understand that firearm safety begins with security at home. Each of us who owns firearms needs to reassess our own security procedures.
After you hug your children, your spouse, your family, and thank your teachers, I encourage you to maintain an open age-appropriate dialogue with your children about their safety, their health and welfare and the way they look out for others in our community. The more we work together on these increasingly challenging issues, the stronger we become. Should you become aware of specific issues of concern, please discuss them with your child’s teacher or Division Head.
Prayers and blessings,