Dear BSD Students and Families:
Virtually every week of the school calendar is replete with the acknowledgment of special days. Unfortunately, June 3 is not just another one of those days, but rather a stark reminder of the horror of last week’s school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, in which nineteen elementary school students and two teachers were gunned down with an assault rifle while in their classroom. June 3 cannot be just another day.
What can we do on Friday, June 3?
Join us in wearing the color orange, in collective solidarity on National Gun Violence Awareness Day.
Why orange? It commemorates the life of a fifteen-year-old girl killed by gun violence, whose friends decided to honor her by wearing orange — the color hunters wear in the woods to protect themselves. Social media hashtags like #WearOrange and #EndGunViolence will also connect interested people on these topics.
What can we do beyond Friday, June 3?
As a school superintendent, I urge you to make your voice heard by elected officials and others able to make a difference. I realize that mine is just one voice adding to the millions of people demanding action, but I also understand that it will take millions of voices demanding action to achieve what has been so difficult — stopping gun violence. Firearms are now the leading cause of death for children and teens. Also, share the resources below with others and support our students by having conversations using those and others outlined in my previous communication to you on this matter here.
In the Bellevue School District, our staff does a great job educating our students on safety procedures and the facts about gun violence. We will continue to discuss the difficulty of “gun control” issues and engage students in thoughtful conversations.
Thank you for considering how you can make a difference in this effort to reduce gun violence. We must find ways to make our schools, our classrooms and our homes safe places for our children.
Dr. Art Jarvis, Interim Superintendent
Bellevue School District 405
- Gun violence, grief and trauma: A resource guide for students, teachers and parents – Chalkbeat
- Talking to Children About Violence: Tips for Parents and Teachers – National Association of School Psychologists
- Checklist to Help Prevent Violence in Schools – National PTA
- National Gun Violence Awareness Day and Wear Orange Weekend