How to talk to your kids about Allen Outlets mass shootings
ByFunAsia 10 May 2023 11:36 AM 70

Kids are three of the eight victims killed in the mass shooting at Allen Premium Outlets. A fourth kid has been left orphaned.

Many school regions and parents are struggling with how to talk with kids about what occurred.

From Allen ISD to Wylie ISD to Prestonwood Christian Academy, the effect of the Allen Premium Outlets mass shooting has ties all over North Texas.

According to experts in child trauma, it is important to begin the discussion with your children rather than trying to avoid the topic.

"The most important thing we can give right now is equip parents as to how to answer the questions their kids are asking, but also the ministry of presence that we would be present in people's lives," said Jack Graham, the senior pastor of Prestonwood Baptist and founder of Prestonwood Christian Academy, where 6-year-old William Cho attends school. Cho's parents, Kyu and Cindy, and his 3-year-old brother James were all killed in the shooting.

Daniela Mendoza and her sister Sofia Mendoza were in fourth and second grade at Cox Elementary School in Wylie ISD.

The district delayed Tuesday's STAAR testing for third and fourth-grade Cox students.

Students were welcomed Tuesday morning by crisis response golden retrievers.

However, in any event, for families not straightforwardly affected, SMU professors Dr. Brandy Shumann and Dr. Misty Solt say parents should be proactive, asking their children what they've heard about the shooting.

"Being present in those conversations doesn't just mean talking about what's happened, but also touch. So you know, hugging your kids," said Dr. Solt.

Dr. Shumann says discussions like this might have to happen a few times.

With the frequency of mass shootings instead of telling your children that it would probably never happen, a better approach is to talk about what they can do if it does happen.

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