A Message of Vigilance and Respect

from Montgomery County Public Schools

October 11, 2023

Dear Families, Students and Staff,

As superintendent of schools, my primary concern is for the physical and emotional well-being of students and staff. So today, I am reaching out and urging you to be vigilant regarding distressing social media content (including videos and images) emanating from the terrorist attacks on innocent civilians in Israel. We are all aware that such content is intended to amplify fear and can cause great emotional harm. I urge you to talk with your children and students about the content they may currently be viewing and sharing. 

As we collectively continue to process these horrific and violent acts, I recognize that the situation in Israel and Gaza has affected many members of our community, including those who have family or friends in the region. Their loss, grief and apprehensions for their loved ones' safety are profound. It is impossible to ignore the fear and anxiety that many within our community are experiencing directly, and as they are exposed to stories of violence and the tragic loss of innocent lives through television, news outlets and social media.

Our work to provide school communities with resources and assistance for those in need has already begun, including providing school leaders with tools and support to assist staff and students. Please do not hesitate to reach out to our school counselors, social workers, or administrators if your child requires any support.

Let us come together to support one another. This is a moment when we must remember our common values of empathy, compassion and respect for one another.

In partnership,

Dr. Monifa B. McKnight

MCPS Superintendent of Schools

Email us: ASKMCPS@mcpsmd.org

Montgomery County Public Schools