Superintendent addresses Texas school tragedy

Fayetteville-Manlius CSD Community Members:

We are heartbroken over the news of yet another senseless tragedy, this time taking place at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, where at least 21 people lost their lives.

As we continue to grapple with the reality that events like this could occur anywhere, it is only natural for students, parents and guardians to worry about school safety. 

In recent years, the F-M district has taken several steps to increase the safety and security of its buildings, including designating single-point of entries at all school buildings, locking school building doors during regular school hours, installing more security cameras across the district and hiring seven full-time Town of Manlius police officers to serve as school resource and special patrol officers. The district also continues to evaluate and improve its use of technology to facilitate prompt and effective communication within district buildings and between district vehicles and the transportation department.

In the past, many F-M staff members have participated in at least two levels of active shooter training. This training focuses on what employees should do in the event of an active shooter in a district building. Other training has included situational awareness training for front-of-house personnel.

We recognize that while the district has many procedures, tools and plans in place, we must never become complacent when it comes to the safety of our students and staff. This serves as a good time to remind students that if they see or hear something that is concerning, they should tell a trusted adult.

The recent tragedy has likely evoked many emotions for our school community. We recognize that some children react to tragedies such as these right away, while others may react much later. How children react, including signs of distress, can vary according to age. If you have questions or concerns about how to best support your child, please reach out to your child’s teacher, school counselor, or building principal. Additionally, The National Child Traumatic Stress Network offers several resources on its website that specifically focus on processing events of mass violence. 

Our thoughts and deepest condolences are with the entire Uvalde community during this devastating time.

Warmest regards, 

Craig J. Tice

F-M Superintendent of Schools