Below is a letter from Superintendent Shannon Shine. View the printed letter here.
“Dear Parents, Teachers and Staff,
It is with a heavy heart I write to inform you of the untimely death of a Draper eighth-grade student Jonathan Johnson.
The Crisis Team has been activated to provide support for students and staff. We have guidance counselors, social workers and grief counselors, in addition to teachers and administrators, assisting and counseling students and staff regarding this tragic situation. We will maintain additional counseling staff for as long as needed.
Should you be aware of any student or adult in need, please contact the school via any staff member so we can follow up accordingly. You may also reach the Draper Main Office at 518-356-8350 and the school principal, Mr. Richard Arket, can be reached directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As news is quickly spreading via electronic communication and word of mouth, all Draper students will be directly apprised of Jonathan’s passing during student lunch periods today by Principal Arket. Eighth-grade lunch is at 10:30 a.m., seventh-grade is at 11:20 a.m. and sixth-grade is at noon.
This news will be shocking and troubling for some students. Although we will maintain counseling supports on site for as many days and weeks as needed, it is also important that parents and guardians further support children for whom this is particularly impactful. Should you need further information regarding how to best support your child, the following resources may be helpful to you.
- “Children and Grief” (Hospice Foundation of America): https://bit.ly/2LpA4h5
- “How to Talk to Kids about Death” (Child Development Institute): https://bit.ly/2PWbfsY
- “Helping Children Cope with Loss, Death and Grief” (National Association of School Psychologists): https://bit.ly/2JcY9XB
At this time, funeral service details are unknown and we are unaware of whether the services will be private or open to the public. If the services are open to the public, I will forward that information to you as soon as it becomes available.
I wish to express my sincerest gratitude to everyone who is helping students and staff navigate this exceptionally challenging situation. Times such as these highlight the love and compassion we have for our students and for each other. May peace and solace be ever present during this time of grief.
Superintendent of Schools”