• Bridgeport Public Schools

    May 25, 2022

    Hello Bridgeport Public School Community,

    We were deeply saddened to hear about another senseless and tragic school shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.  Our thoughts are with the members of that community and the community in Buffalo, NY who are also dealing with the grief and pain of last week’s tragic events. The safety of our students and staff is always the top priority in our District. We take our responsibility to ensure the safety of our children and staff  very seriously. I would like to take this opportunity to remind all of our families and staff that we have a plan in place at each of our schools to handle emergency situations. We work closely with the Bridgeport Police Department and the Bridgeport Emergency Operations Center to prepare for these types of emergencies. While no amount of planning can guarantee that a tragedy such as this will not occur, we are taking every precaution we know to keep students and staff safe while at school. There will undoubtedly be extensive coverage of the events that occurred on the news in the coming days. It is equally important for us to work with our staff and ensure they are prepared to support their students in difficult times such as these.

    While we recognize that this may seem overwhelming to everyone, I do want to share with you some tips from the National Association of School Psychologists for helping your children cope with news such as this.

    What Parents Can Do:

    1. Focus on your children over the week following the tragedy. Tell them you love them and everything will be okay. Try to help them understand what has happened, keeping in mind their developmental level.

    2. Make time to talk with your children. Remember if you do not talk to your children about this incident someone else will. Take some time and determine what you wish to say.

    3. Stay close to your children. Your physical presence will reassure them and give you the opportunity to monitor their reaction. Many children will want actual physical contact. Give plenty of hugs. Let them sit close to you, and make sure to take extra time at bedtime to cuddle and to reassure them that they are loved and safe.

    4. Limit your child’s television viewing of these events. If they must watch, watch with them for a brief time; then turn the set off. Don’t sit re-watching the same events over and over again.

    5. Maintain a “normal” routine. To the extent possible stick to your family’s normal routine for dinner, homework, chores, bedtime, etc., but don’t be inflexible. Children may have a hard time concentrating on schoolwork or falling asleep at night.

    6. Spend extra time reading or playing quiet games with your children before bed. These activities are calming, foster a sense of closeness and security, and reinforce a sense of normalcy. Spend more time tucking them in. Let them sleep with a light on if they ask for it.

    7. Safeguard your children’s physical health. Stress can take a physical toll on children as well as adults. Make sure your children get appropriate sleep, exercise, and nutrition.

    8. Consider praying or thinking hopeful thoughts for the victims and their families. It may be a good time to take your children to your place of worship, write a poem, or draw a picture to help your child express their feelings and feel that they are somehow supporting the victims and their families.

    9. Find out what resources your school has in place to help children cope. Most schools are likely to be open and often are a good place for children to regain a sense of normalcy. Being with their friends and teachers can help.

    All our schools will make counseling available to all children and adults who need to talk to someone. If you have concerns about your child’s reaction to this news, please contact your child’s school principal immediately. Our staff will also be sensitive to students who they identify as needing additional support in the coming days. Stay well….


    Michael J. Testani
    Superintendent of Schools