Dear all –
This past week, our community has experienced two traumatic incidents –a bus accident and a man making racial and violent threats toward our crossing guard and others nearby. Both of these situations have generated many feelings of fear, anger, outrage, hopelessness, and anxiety. In response to the threats made against the crossing guard, MPD is actively investigating the incident with information provided by eye witnesses. We also have requested and received additional MPD and DCPS school police support at morning drop off and afternoon pick up.
This is also a good opportunity to remind ourselves that while we cannot control the environment around us, we can control our response to intense or unsafe situations. Please be sure that your student and your caregiver know that if there are ever unsafe conditions outside the school, they should return to school for shelter. Over the course of the year we will practice several different safety drills, including fire drills, lock down drills, and shelter in place drill (in case of severe weather). We will have monthly fire drills (our first one was a great success!) and we will do two total lockdown drills. Our first lockdown drill will be prior to August 31st and I will send communication about when the lockdown drills occur. These drills and procedures are also implemented with aftercare (CLS and FLEX) if there ever was an emergency situation while they are in the building. Please also know that if we ever have to evacuate the building for any reason, our reunification location is Blessed Sacrament Church located at 3630 Quesada St NW, Washington, DC 20015. We would contact families via email and/or robocall.
We should also remind ourselves that while bad things may happen, we are well prepared to continue in our normal routines. Violence and hate cannot take that power from us as a community. This week, we have pulled together to be sure that everyone is safe and I have no doubt that we will continue to do so. Finally, thank you to everyone for the emotional and moral support of our staff, students and parents. We stand together in our diversity and our complete rejection of violence and hate. As our t-shirts read on the first day of school: “We are Lafayette” – “In diversity there is beauty and there is strength” – Maya Angelou.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any other questions.