Principal's Weekly Message

Principal Griffin's Weekly Message

SMS Parents,

This has been a tough week for many of us as parents, as students, and as educators.  We all wonder, “How can this continue to happen in schools?”  I promise all of our parents, students, and staff that we are driven to keep our school safe.  We talk about safety and procedures that we use all the time.  As Dr. Epps stated in an email to parents and staff on Thursday, “our district places the safety of our students and staff as a top priority”.  We do drills for everything and we previously planned a lock down drill for next week before the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting.  This drill will mean more to our students and staff than ever.  We will continue to look for ways to better prepare ourselves for possibilities. 

As I was watching the news on Thursday evening and Friday morning, I was greatly impacted by the comments from three different people.  First, a male student commented that his school and community didn’t need to hear about the political responses and questions that were being made and asked related to guns and mental health.  He wanted the school and community to come together and show love and care for each other.  He said that we should tell each other ‘I love you’ every day.  The second person was a young female student.  She said that she had an argument with a friend of hers who was killed and she never would have the chance to say “I’m sorry”.  We should think of this when we leave each other during the day as we are leaving for work or school.  We never know what could happen next.  Lastly, a father said, “I sent my daughter to school yesterday thinking that she would be safe and now she is gone.”  As a father myself, I cannot imagine how this parent must feel.  Losing a child is the worse thing that can happen to a parent.  I look at all of our students as my children.  I want each and every one to be safe just like I know that you do.

Awareness is important!  We all need to be aware of our surroundings.  We need to know what is happening around us whether we are at school, entering a convenience store, in a movie theater, at the grocery store, or driving a car.  We ask our staff to scan their areas, hallways, athletic fields, and grounds for anything strange including people.  They are asked to take a walkie talkie with them when they venture outside with classes so that they can report unusual events immediately to administration and our school safety officer.  Students have been directed to never open an exterior door when they do not know who the person is at the door.  We have many procedures in place.  On a daily basis, we depend on close to 700 people in our building to make good decisions and always think Children First as it relates to safety.

Our students are our first line of defense when it comes to knowledge of threats and unstable behavior.  Social media is used by many who are disturbed or planning something violent.  Please talk to your child and tell him/her that he/she should always report anything that could be a threat or something that is dangerous to the nearest adult.  We all need to work together to make sure that school violence or any violence is stopped before it happens. 

Students can be affected by a school shooting in many different ways.  Parents should talk to their children and have a discussion.  You know your child and what he or she can handle.  Here is a link that gives you suggestions about how to best talk to your child.  http://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources/school-safety-and-crisis/talking-to-children-about-violence-tips-for-parents-and-teachers  As always, our guidance counselors and other staff members are available if your child needs help.  Please let us know.

If you should have questions about school safety at Springfield Middle School, please talk to us.  Thank you for always following our procedures as you visit our school.

Please visit with us for our Make a Difference Night at Springfield Middle School is this Thursday, February 22.  Please see the attached flyer.

Invitation MAD Night Final 2018.pdf 

Thank you for reading and have a great weekend with your child(ren)!  Give each and every one a great big hug and tell him/her that you love him/her!

Keith Griffin, Principal

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