February 21, 2018

Talking to Children about Tragic Events


In the wake of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL many parents are left grappling with how to explain the tragic event -- at a setting where most kids spend a majority of their days -- to their children and teens. While younger children have likely been shielded from the tragedy, many older children have seen or heard the reports.


The American School Counselor Association recommends the following when talking with students about the recent shooting:


  • Try to keep routines as normal as possible. Kids gain security from the predictability of routine, including attending school.
  • Limit exposure to television and the news.
  • Be honest with kids and share with them as much information as they are developmentally able to handle.
  • Listen to kids’ fears and concerns.
  • Reassure kids that the world is a good place to be, but that there are people who do bad things.
  • Rebuild and reaffirming attachments and relationships.


Below are some useful resources from the National Child Traumatic Stress Network regarding the recent shooting:



The Child Trama Toolkit and other trauma related resources can be found on the Center’s website.


Recently Added Resources/Publications:




CFOP 170-1, Florida’s Child Welfare Practice Model, Chapter 9, Newborns or Other New Children in Households with Active Investigation or Ongoing Services and Chapter 13, Confidentiality of Records have been updated to reflect changes that are in accordance with section 39.701, Florida Statute.




CFOP 170-1, Ch. 9


CFOP 170-1, Ch. 13





Matching…How Do We Get the Right Fit

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