ILLINOIS – Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT) President Dan Montgomery released the following statement on the St. Louis school shooting.

Dan Montgomery“We send our deepest condolences to the students, teachers, staff, parents, and entire St. Louis community who are suffering in the aftermath of today’s tragic school shooting.

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“Just last weekend, our members gathered in St. Louis for the IFT convention only a few miles away from the Central Visual and Performing Arts High School. Our deep sadness over this news strengthens our resolve to fight to end senseless gun violence in this country. Quite simply, it is a public health crisis of the highest degree.

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“On Saturday, about 500 IFT delegates heard from March for Our Lives founder and Parkland School shooting survivor David Hogg and fellow activist Trevon Bosley about the lasting trauma that students are facing due to gun violence, including school shootings like the one in St. Louis today. These shootings have devasting effects on the mental health of everyone involved.

“To help address this public health crisis, our union passed two resolutions to prevent mass violence by increasing student services in schools and keeping students safe with common sense gun safety. It is imperative that students receive school-based interventions; school districts must hire more counselors, psychologists, and social workers to provide critical student support services.

“The IFT is committed to helping ensure a safe environment for students and educators in our schools and to advocate for more funding to provide mental health services and trained support personnel to prevent another tragedy and to help survivors heal from trauma.”

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