Michiana parents send kids to school after Friday's tragedy - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Michiana parents send kids to school after Friday's tragedy


Parents say they held on to their kids longer than usual before sending them to school Monday.

"An extra extra kiss. An extra 'I love you,'' says an elementary school parent, Brenda Byrd.

"This morning was a little bit harder saying bye to the kids. I think it was more important for us to give our kids a big hug and kiss and let them know we love them," says parent Lori Strombeck.

They say they don't doubt the schools, but after Friday's tragedy in Connecticut, the first day back was hard.

"It's not that we don't have faith in our schools because we do, it's just that what happened there could happen anywhere," Strombeck.

"One of the amazing things in all the news coverage is how amazing the teachers were and that's something I really do trust. I think our teachers are impressive," says parent Maria Potts.

And that's why these parents still sent their kids to school.

"I'm not going to say it didn't cross my mind, but I try not to worry and I don't want to show them that I'm worried," says elementary school parent, Melanie Howard.

"I feel like you can't live your life constantly in fear of something. I don't want my kids to be afraid to come to school," Strombeck.

And South Bend president of the National Education Association, Jason Zook says teachers don't want students or parents to be scared. "We are vigilant, we are always looking and making sure things are being appropriate."

He says every school building has a plan for emergencies and those are regularly reviewed. "School's supposed to be a safe place."

But that doesn't mean parents weren't a little anxious to see their kids at the end of the day.

"I honestly have to say it is a relief to see her come out and I probably will give my kids an extra hug and kiss," Strombeck.

Michiana schools say they didn't see a drastic change in attendance Monday. Many say they're reevaluating safety procedures and are keeping faculty and parents informed.

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