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Shelby County Schools providing mental health support for Cummings K-8 Optional students after shooting

Counselors and mental health clinicians have been holding group and one-on-one sessions for students.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Shelby County Schools is helping Cummings K-8 Optional Elementary students process and cope after experiencing a shooting between two 13-year-old students. 

The school system has been holding group and one-on-one sessions for students and has mental health clinicians and counselors available for students. 

Dr. Angela Hargrave, the school system's executive director of Student Equity, Enrollment, and Discipline, said the district wants students to know they have the support at school to talk about their emotions after a traumatic event. 

"The healing process involves just being able to share your thoughts and feelings about what has happened and then ways to get past it," Hargrave said.

Parents can also play a major role in creating a safe space for their children. 

"Allow your child the opportunity to talk through their emotions with you," Hargrave said. "Don’t be afraid to ask them what they’re thinking, how they are feeling, and what they are hearing from some of their friends."

SCS knows students face trauma outside the classroom. It's working towards being a trauma-informed and responsive district so its students can have the skills to process trauma in a healthy way. 

"The goal is to really intentionally focus on developing those social and personal competencies in all of our students as well as building a system of support that develops their resiliency," Hargrave said.