Hillsborough County Public Schools stands together with our students, our families, our community, and law enforcement during this time of grief and outrage across our nation. My heart breaks for the lives that continue to be lost to racist brutality. These most recent events are a constant reminder that we still have much work to do in creating positive and inclusive environments; each of us must be a part of the change we need to see in our city and country.
Hillsborough County Public Schools does not and will not tolerate racism of any kind. We work every day in our classrooms to ensure equity and inclusion, to ensure our students are supported, engaged, and provided a safe learning environment for all children. Our students and staff have an important voice and we will listen.
As the Superintendent of more than 225,000 diverse students and being the largest employer in Hillsborough County, my thoughts are with our students, our families, and our staff. I think about you watching this unfold in our neighborhoods and am concerned about how you are coping with the unrest in our community. I worry about how the continued racist and unjust acts across our nation may be affecting you and your family.
Even though the school year has ended, there are mental health supports available to our students and families. Our Mental Health Hotline, created during the extended school closure, remains open Monday through Thursday during our summer hours. You can contact this resource at (813) 272-4787.
In an effort to further support our district families, there are also partner resources in our community for trauma counseling and mental health services:
- The Crisis Center of Tampa Bay – crisiscenter.com or dial 2-1-1
- Chrysalis – chrysalishealth.com or (813) 587-0335
- Northside Behavioral Health Center – northsidebhc.org or (813) 977-8700
- Gracepoint – gracepointwellness.org or (813) 272-2882
Our district has put policies and practices in place to make sure that everyone in our school community has the opportunity to learn and work in an environment where they are treated with dignity and respect, free from bullying and harassment.
As a school district, we have a responsibility to make sure we are doing our part to foster empathy and kindness. Our schools are diverse places where our children learn acceptance and belonging.
I hope each of you remain safe and understand that peace must be our path forward.
Addison G. Davis
Superintendent of Schools
From Our Student Services Department
During the past week, our country has experienced widespread demonstrations and, at times, violence in reaction to the tragic death of George Floyd in Minnesota. Given extensive news coverage and the impact in Tampa Bay, your child may have questions or be confused about recent events.
Although school is currently in recess, we know that learning continues everyday with you as your child’s first and lifelong teacher. Therefore, our district would like to share a few resources regarding social justice that may be helpful when talking with your child about diversity, race, and privilege.
Student Services supports you as you raise a socially conscious and aware child and hope that you find the aforementioned resources helpful. If you would like additional assistance, please call the district’s Mental Health Hotline at (813) 272-4787.