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A Message from the Superintendent: Community Conversations

Dear Lansing School Community,

Last week, Lansing CSD invited Don Budmen from Ferrara Fiorenza PC legal firm to present on the NYS Dignity Act. You may view the presentation on the districts YouTube channel by clicking here.

The district will also be hosting a number of educational presentations for our school district and larger community:
  • Mental Health Association of Tompkins County - Mental Health and Wellness 101, Wednesday, February 13th, 6:00-7:30 p.m.
  • Suicide Prevention and Crisis Management - March TBD, 6:00-7:30 p.m. 
  • NYS Homeland Security and NYS Police - School Violence: Incident Prevention and Response Workshop - April TBD, 6:00-7:30
In addition to the educational community conversations, the district has multiple task forces/work groups looking at ways to improve our district practices and procedures to better our school culture and climate. When looking to create positive change, we need to think deeply about who we are, who we want to be, and what we need to do to get there. Members of the Lansing administration, Board of Education, faculty, and staff continue to be fully committed to collaborating with our school stakeholders and larger community to create, promote, and reinforce a school district where every student feels safe and a sense of belonging first and foremost.
We shared the following message with you last school year and again this fall. We continue to believe that there is much we can do to create peaceful schools free from the influence of violence and bullying in all forms. We must be mindful and implement purposeful strategies to increase levels of safety and security while simultaneously promoting student wellness and resilience (National Association of School Psychologists).

There are many specific strategies we at Lansing use to create and promote safe schools. I again want to reiterate the importance of the following three areas we know have great impact on school safety and wellness. I encourage you to speak with each other and your children regarding the following:
1. We must feel connected. All members of our school and community must feel valued. 
2. Our environment must be one that is filled and led with kindness, respect, trust and love. All members of our school and community must lead this way.
3. We must feel empowered to speak. All members of our school and community must feel empowered to use our voice.

If you or your child ever feel that something is amiss, or just doesn't feel right, or you hear a violent / bullying/ unkind statement/ threat, you need to speak up. You can do so anonymously or by reaching out to any school educator and/ or school employee. If you need help, ask. We are here for you.

We understand the difficulty in speaking up and self-reporting. Our faculty have had multiple trainings to help identify a variety of situations and students in crisis. However, we fully encourage everyone to ask for help and to report situations that may need assistance.

If you would like to leave an anonymous email message, you can do so by going to the following link.

This is a Lansing schools specific Tip Line. Though it asks for your name and information, you do not have to include it. The email will go directly to the Office of the Superintendent. This is to inform us of situations. 
You may also fill out our Dignity for All Students Reporting Form and deliver it to any school main office. The DASA form can be found at the following link. Additional Dignity Act information can be found here.

You may also call and speak with any of our school mental health providers, educators, support staff, and administrators at any time.

If you ever feel an immediate threat or emergency, please contact 911 directly.
 
RESOURCES
1. Here is a link that leads you to the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). Lansing uses the information provided by NASP when reviewing our school safety policies and protocols.
https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources/school-safety-and-crisis/school-violence-prevention/responding-to-school-violence-tips-for-administrators
2. Here is a link that leads you to some effective Tips on how to speak with your children regarding school safety and school violence.  
https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources/school-safety-and-crisis/talking-to-children-about-violence-tips-for-parents-and-teachers
3. Here is an additional link regarding school crisis and bullying in schools.
https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources/school-safety-and-crisis/bullying-prevention
 
It is truly with loving open hearts that we welcome these very difficult conversations. When we commit to working together and involving and valuing all members of our community equally, we have the potential to be whatever it is we choose.

Sincerely,
Chris Pettograsso
"It's a great day to be a Bobcat!"