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Ella T. Grasso Technical High School
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Telephone (860) 448-0220, Main FAX (860) 446-9895, Guidance FAX (860) 445-3851,
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 Link to Connecticut State Department of Education Website


March 18, 2008

Dear Parents/Guardians of Grasso Students:

The video message recently posted on the YouTube.com website has frustrated all of us.  As the principal of your child’s high school, I want to assure each of you that my number one priority is the daily safety of your children, the staff, faculty and administration of Grasso Southeastern Technical High School. When we are victims of another’s poor choice, which could unfortunately happen anywhere in this country, it causes all of us to redouble our efforts to ensure that we have safe schools.

Since March 3, 2008, we have taken specific action to increase security in and around Grasso. We are working closely with Troop E of the Connecticut State Police as well as our building School Resource Officer, and we have requested and received increased police presence on campus.  Visitors to campus are required to enter through one door and check in upon arrival. Security staff, administrators and teachers are in the hallways, media center, cafeteria, and gymnasiums during and between each class period. As always, we continue to lock perimeter doors to restrict entry to the building. In addition, we have requested the installation of a door buzzer system for visitors. 

We have talked to students about the posting of the video, we continue to share safety precautions and ask students to accept, and take care of each other during this time. We have reinforced how important it is to take personal responsibility to promote and maintain a safe and friendly school where all people are valued. Our counselors, psychologist and social worker are available to speak with students, faculty and staff who have concerns.

We would like to reassure you that it is a natural reaction of your students to be anxious and fearful for some time, and over time, these feelings will diminish. Here are some specific things you can do as parents to reassure your children:

  1. Establish a sense of safety and security for your children: Reassure them that you and their teachers will work hard to provide for their safety. Let them know that despite the media coverage that appears negative, our school is a very safe place for children on a day-to-day basis. Let them know their school has safety plans and will continue to work to make it a safer place.
  2. Listen to your children’s feelings and concerns: Validate your child’s feelings. Encourage them to talk about their fears and concerns. Reassure them that their feelings are normal.
  3. Help your child clear up any misconceptions: Help correct misunderstanding regarding the cause or nature of this incident. There are many rumors after such an event. They should not believe everything they hear. Talking it out and problem solving together helps reestablish a sense of control.
  4. Seek help as needed: If you are concerned about your child’s reactions or have ongoing concerns about their behavior or emotions, please contact the counselor, psychologist, or social worker at school to discuss your concerns. Please let your children know if they have concerns about someone at school, they should tell an adult in order to get help immediately.

Again, I want to emphasize that our number one priority at Grasso is the safety of your children. If you have questions, please feel free to contact me. 

Yours truly,

 

Kerry Bell
Principal