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The Office of Community Services is committed to advocating and working for the betterment of our community’s youth. The Office offers a variety of direct services programming in addition to serving as an advocate for youth and their families.



 Important Messages

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) released a new video where Department staff share personal stories and identify tools that support students experiencing bullying. In response to students suffering bullying in schools, ED has redoubled efforts to give parents, educators, and students the tools they need to stop harassment, including through the website and civil rights enforcement.

They have also joined thousands of supportive messages, and numerous fellow agencies and Obama Administration colleagues, in the “It Gets Better” project. And while ED staff explain that their experiences got better over time, they also want to emphasize that students shouldn’t have to wait – together we can help make it better today, not tomorrow.


Helping Our Children and Local Community Cope With The Tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School

In the wake of the tragic shooting in Newtown, CT., many parents as well agencies that serve children and families will be faced with questions, concerns, and fears that need to be addressed. It is important that these issues be dealt with forthrightly, with sensitivity and appropriately. These resources are provided to help guide those interactions.

• An Exchange article by Diane Levin
 "When the World is a Dangerous Place - Helping Children Deal with Violence in the News"
• A New York Times article
 "Tips for Talking to Children About the Shooting"
• Advice from National Child Traumatic Stress Network 
 "Talking to Children about the Shooting" (.pdf)
• Advice from the National Association of School Psychologists
 "A National Tragedy: Helping Children Cope"
• A resource from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services 
 "Tips for Talking to Children and Youth after Traumatic Events" (.pdf)
• Fred Rogers' advice from Family Communications 
 "Helping Children Deal with Tragic Events in the News" (.pdf)
• Advice from the American Psychological Association
 "Helping Your Children Manage Distress in the Aftermath of a Shooting"

Other resources available through

• Understanding and Responding to the Violence in Children's Lives by Diane E. Levin
• Early Childhood Professionals - Partners with Parents Helping Young Children Exposed to Violence by Beverly Roberson Jackson
• Shelter from the Storm - Using the Classroom to Help Children Cope with Violence by Betsy McAlister Groves and Sally Mazur
• Power Rangers - An Exposive Topic by Diane E. Levin
• Supporting Teachers to Create a Culture for Non-Violence by Margie Carter
• Listening to Understand Violence - The Voices of Youth by Susan Hopkins and Susie Peppers
• A Message about Violence Prevention from Youth to Early Childhood Teachers by Diane E. Levin and Nancy Carlsson-Page

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