Dear Rich Central Students, Parents, and Staff,
It is with much sadness that I inform you of the loss of one of our students, who passed away last evening. He was an amazing young man that has shown tremendous growth from freshman year until now. He was an athlete but more importantly, he was a student focused on his academic success. Losing a loved one is always a difficult time, and it can be even harder for students to deal with such a tragedy. We want to assure everyone that during this time our focus is on supporting all of our students, and especially those who were close to the student.
Our school’s student support services department and district crisis team were available and ready this morning to provide support and comfort to any student who was mourning the loss of their classmate. We have also set up a counseling room for our grieving students who may have a difficult time staying focused in class. This room will be available all day, and staff will provide them with a pass if they need to speak with someone. We will continue to provide these services throughout the remainder of the week. If a student cannot remain in school, parents are asked to notify the school.
A student death is difficult for everyone to grapple with and can cause anxiety and sorrow for some students. We understand that teens have a mature understanding of death, but this tragedy may cause teens to question their own mortality. In addition, some teens may have had no experience in coping with a loss like this and may be confused as to how to handle grief. If you feel that your teens are having difficulty, we encourage you to discuss their thoughts and feelings to help them work through their grief or concerns. Please also consider monitoring and discussing your teen’s communications (social media, phone, e-mail, text messaging) to further assess their potential needs. Included in this letter are resources that you might find useful to assist in discussing the topic of grief with your student.
We know this is a rough time for all of us, but we will get through it by supporting one another. Once again, on behalf of all Olympian Nation, our condolences go out to the family and friends. We will continue to keep you in our thoughts and prayers.