HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Today Huntsville City Schools held a safety and inclusion forum with a variety of community partners to give parents and teachers access to resources and information that can help them make sure their children feel safe and included at school.
Donna Clark is the Coordinator for Behavioral Learning at Huntsville City Schools and she says, "In order for students to achieve academically they need to have all of their basic needs met and that's to feel included and safe at their schools."
Huntsville City Schools wants to find ways to help and support all students by giving them the tools and skills they need to be healthy and successful learners.
In order to help make schools safer, the district has created a School Safety Task Force, which is made of a team of volunteers that give suggestions on ways to help make schools safer.
Richard Alexander is a volunteer with the task force and he says that parents should take advantage of these resources to help fill the gaps in areas where they may need some support. "In this digitally connected world where children can't get away from what's going on outside when they get home we have to be able to provide them with the tools and resources to get help when they need it," said Alexander.
For parent and teacher Anjanette Wiggins, knowing these resources are here and being educated on how to use them is personal.
"My middle sister had an incident in high school... and I'm much older than my younger siblings so this actually happened while I was away, but she did try to commit suicide," said Wiggins.
Now Wiggins uses that experience to help her students and children cope with the pressures that come with school and growing up in general.
"Seeing what she went through as a young person and the depression that she still suffers with now, even though she is quite successful, just makes me want to understand best, again how I can you know understand people and understand how to help them," said Wiggins.
Education is the key because the more you know, the more you can help.
For parents who weren't able to make it today. The superintendent will be sending an email out with information on today's event.
Each month the school will be holding focus sessions on more specific topics affecting students. To keep track of when and where those sessions will occur, follow the Huntsville City Schools Facebook page.