Important Information and Updates, January 30

Richneck Families,

Thank you for all you have done to provide unwavering support for our students and staff over the past three weeks. With your feedback and input, you've helped us return teaching and learning to Richneck. Keeping all students, staff, and visitors safe remains a top priority and we need your support.  

Monday, January 30, 2023
School will resume at the normal time and will be a full instructional day. We will have police presence on campus to assist with the transition. All students will receive a clear book bag on Monday. Students will bring the clear book bags home on Monday afternoon. If your child brings a lunch to school or other items, please be aware that these items will go through metal detection and will be subject to search. All students and visitors must enter and exit the school building from the front main doors.

We will limit visitors in the building the first week back to allow our staff the opportunity to establish routines and procedures with students. Parents who opt to walk their child to class must show identification and will be subject to search.

Social/Emotional Support
Licensed therapists and social workers will continue to be available for students, staff, and parents on-site, no appointment is needed.

We look forward to the return of our Richneck students!

Supporting Children After a Critical Incident

Mother comforting childFollowing a tragic or critical incident, parents/guardians may notice one or more of the feelings and behaviors listed below as your child copes and processes the incident.

It is important to note that some children show no outward signs of being upset. Other children may not give evidence of being upset until several weeks or months after the incident. Remember these are normal reactions. By showing patience and acceptance, you will reassure your child and encourage the process of getting back to a normal routine.

Feelings and behaviors demonstrated by elementary-aged children

  • Anger by pouting, hitting, kicking, or throwing things.
  • Restlessness and high activity level or lack of focus.
  • Anxiety about what will happen to them.
  • Fear of being left alone; may have bad dreams or want to sleep with a parent or sibling.
  • Clinging to a parent.
  • Afraid something will happen to their parent or to themselves.
  • Upset at the loss of a favorite toy, game, etc.
  • Crying or becoming quiet, withdrawn and not wanting to talk about the incident.
  • Fear of going back to school; not wanting to separate from parents.
  • Afraid of loud noises and storms.

What Parents and Teachers Can Do to Help

Parents talking to child
  • Talk with your child. Be patient and give simple, accurate information.  Talk about feelings. "It's okay to be sad and to cry."
  • Listen to what your child says and how he/she feels. Watch for behaviors that give clues to stress, fear and anxiety. 
  • Reassure your child. Have your child follow his/her normal routine.
  • Spend time with your child. Give extra hugs. Touching provides comfort and security.
  • Observe your child at play or talking with friends and listen for concerns expressed.
  • Provide activities for your child to express himself/herself such as drawing, writing, playing a sport, etc. These activities help a child release tension.
  • Ask for help for yourself or your child if these emotions last for an extended period of time. 
  • Try and keep routines as normal as possible. Children gain security from the predictability of routine, including attending school.
  • Limit exposure to television and the news.
  • Be honest with your child and share with as much information as they are developmentally able to handle.
  • Listen to your child's fears and concerns.
  • Reassure your child that the world is a good place to be, but that there are people who do bad things.

Contact the Helpline for Assistance: (757) 788-0635

Newport News Public Schools has established a 24-hour helpline, (757) 788-0635, managed by our partners at the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board to support families and staff.

Licensed therapists are available to assist parents and staff with tips for talking with children, counseling services and resource referrals.