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S’pore schools offer mental health support to students affected by River Valley High School incident, Singapore News & Top Stories

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SINGAPORE – Schools across the island have instructed students that they will method academics and counsellors to focus on Monday’s (July 19) alleged homicide at River Valley High School, which has shaken the nation.

At least six notices have been despatched since Tuesday night by principals of a number of main and secondary schools, together with St Margaret’s Primary School and Maris Stella High School, addressing the incident and providing psychological support to their students and employees.

The Straits Times understands that a number of principals spoke concerning the incident throughout college assemblies – together with at Juying Secondary School and Singapore Chinese Girls’ School – on Wednesday to treatment any anxieties.

On Tuesday, a 16-year-old pupil from River Valley High School was charged with homicide in a district courtroom. He can’t be named as he’s below 18 years previous.

A number of principals additionally prayed for the households and students affected by the tragedy.

Over at Methodist Girls’ School, principal Grace Ng appealed to mother and father in a letter to assist their youngsters course of the incident, whereas providing assist from college counsellors and kind academics.

Ms Ng stated: “It will be important to help our children understand that this is indeed an exceptional incident and tragedy, and that schools remain a safe and caring space due to the systems we have in place.”

In a discover to mother and father and guardians, Mrs Mary Seah, principal of School of the Arts Singapore (Sota), outlined how its academics will speak to students concerning the alleged homicide, which included acknowledging that it’s regular to worry and fear for his or her security, in addition to the tightening of college safety.

Mrs Seah added within the letter: “In spite of all these rules, security features and emergency preparedness, the mental health of our students remains the most important factor as we learn from this incident.”

Parents instructed ST that they’re rattled by the incident and anxious about how to focus on what occurred with their youngsters as younger as Primary 1, a few of whom have heard concerning the incident from their pals and classmates.

A 48-year-old housewife who wished to be often called Mrs Kam stated: “I had to stabilise myself before talking to my children about the incident. I never thought it would happen on our shores.”

Her two youngsters attend Maris Stella High School and St Margaret’s Secondary School, which have taken completely different approaches in addressing the matter both by talking to the students instantly or asking them to pen down their ideas in school.

She stated: “Whether or not a letter was sent to parents, it gives me peace of mind that schools are trying their best to help students.”

Mrs Esther Foong, whose youngsters, aged eight and 10, attend Rulang Primary School, added: “I think the school did a good job (in helping pupils to understand the incident) because my daughter told me how she learnt to show more care and concern for her friends.”

The 36-year-old co-founder of The Treasure Box Sg, which equips and offers assets for households, added: “We have been having conversations to assist our kids perceive the incident.

“I think everyone plays a part, not just teachers, in helping students to be more gracious in their speech and actions as well as looking after their mental welfare.”

For many mother and father, the incident has been a reminder to listen to their youngsters’s mental health.

Said Mrs Kam: “It’s a wake-up call to us parents on how we speak to our children – to not be too strict with their studies and to check up on them.”

Housewife Pichaya Sretthoe, 44, whose daughter is a Secondary 1 Sota pupil, stated mother and father on the college have began a survey to see how they may help support their youngsters’s mental well-being.

She stated: “This incident does not make me feel less confident of school safety, as this could happen anywhere… I am more concerned about how I should deal with my own kid at home – how to help her have a healthy mind, and how to prevent her from having dangerous thoughts that may result in her harming herself or others.”

Additional reporting by Gabrielle Ng

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