A teacher on Newtown shooting: A time for somber reflection

Lauren Rosseau, a teacher killed in Newtown, CT.   Source: AP

By Kathleen Sullivan

I’m still trying to digest the news from today. As teacher, it is truly the unfathomable. How could this happen to these babies? How does this happen in a school where we are suppose to feel safe and where we are entrusted with people’s most precious gifts of life, their children.

It doesn’t matter if you are in an urban community where gun crime seems commonplace or a quaint, seemingly safe New England town. The truth is, if someone is set on committing such a heinous act,it will happen.   Today, I had my 5th graders and a group of kindergartners in my room at the end of the day for “book buddies.” This innocent interaction between these two groups had extra special meaning today. The “big kids” were taking care of the “little kids” and we, as teachers, watched over them.

There is no sense in trying to “make sense” of this.  How do we make sense of the beauty of natural wonders? How do we make sense of one human being causing so much pain to other human beings? No answers really suffice. They just are.

Families have lost loved ones. A nation mourns for those children and the others lost today.  A time for reflection…

Kathleen Sullivan teaches 5th grade science at a public school in Malden, Massachusetts.

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Comments (2)

  1. Kori Milroy

    Very well stated, Kathleen. It is impossible to make sense of something like this. We can only hope that finally something will change – perhaps there will be an overhaul of either gun laws or school security procedures, or perhaps there will be a concerted effort to change the culture of violence in our country.

    Today I taught all day with my classroom door closed and locked. I didn’t like it, as it made me feel even more isolated as a teacher than usual. But I will continue to do it, because it is the only thing I can do to make us all feel more safe.

  2. Thanks for posting your thoughts on the matter, Kathleen. I think it’s important for teachers to support each other on this difficult subject and somehow find a way to recreate the feeling of security in our schools and classrooms that was shattered on that day. It’s hard to find a good time or place to come together, making posts like this all the more valuable.


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