Crisis Recovery Team
The district has a Crisis Recovery Team made up of school counselors, school nurses, and other staff in case a crisis event occurs at schools or district-wide. Team members are trained to provide immediate and ongoing support to students, staff, and families in order to mitigate the emotional impact of a critical incident and ensure the safety of all children, staff, and others working at our schools.
Helping Students Recover from Traumatic Events
Tips for TeachersTeachers are among the most important adults in the transition and recover of students affected by a natural disaster or other crisis. Their efforts will begin to give students a sense of stability, security, and belonging. Not only will students look to teachers for support, but the learning process and social environment of the classroom can contribute to students' ability to cope.
- Ensure that displaced students feel welcomed and supported and they are not bullied or ostracized.
- Reassure students that they will be okay.
- Maintain consistent and fair discipline.
- Provide flexibility such as extra time to do work.
- Show empathy for what they are going through and make time to listen.
- Allow them to keep in contact with others who survived the disaster.
- Provide a variety of methods and opportunities to express their reactions for the disaster.
- Create opportunities for students to help others.
Tips for AdministratorsThe early decisions educators make during a crisis will have far-reaching implications for both displaced students and the overall school climate.
- Support parents who have difficulty separating from their children.
- Sponsor parent gatherings so parents have a place to meet each other.
- Recognize a wide range of students during assemblies with a special focus on making new students feel valued.
- Provide extra support for staff, including staff development for helping disaster victims, as well as time for teachers to meet and share frustrations.
- Be flexible and adaptable in an interim dynamic environment.
When to refer to a mental health professional
Particularly at risk are children who have lost family members or friends, who have experienced personal loss previously or have been involved in family crises previously. If normal symptoms persist for more than a month, referral for counseling consultation is recommended.
Preschool/ElementaryReferral should be considered when the child is excessively withdrawn or does not respond to attention and attempts to draw him/her out or exhibits unusual behavior.
Middle/High SchoolReferral should be considered when the youngster:
If these indicators exist, contact a building counselor/interventionist.
- is disoriented
- complains of significant memory gaps
- is despondent or shows agitation, restlessness and pacing
- is severely depressed and withdrawn
- mutilates self
- uses drugs or alcohol excessively
- is unable to care for self
- performs ritualistic acts or is excessively preoccupied with thoughts/ideas
- hallucinates--hears voices, sees visions
- has the delusion that someone or something is out to get him/her or his/her family
- is afraid he/she will kill self/another
- is unable to make simple decisions or carry out everyday functions
- shows extreme pressure of speech--talk overflows