Sarah Buttenwieser: Our kids need well-staffed schools

Northampton High School students.

Northampton High School students. STAFF FILE PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

Published: 05-15-2024 5:21 PM

Modified: 05-15-2024 7:13 PM

My understanding is that increased staffing in the schools was deemed necessary as schools dealt with the impact —emotional and otherwise — of the pandemic upon our children. Now, we are post-federal emergency. However, our kids are not post-pandemic emergency. They continue to experience fallout from over a year without consistent in-person schooling, both emotionally and academically.

Our children’s collective wellness is the foundation of their future and our community’s future. As a Northampton High School parent

To lose the one person in guidance who doesn’t serve the kids with special supports is to pretend adolescents don’t “need” support without a piece of paper. We all know that isn’t true. To make these cuts doesn’t square with the reality of human development and humans’ emotional and physical safety, which is, to my mind, one of the most essential things that school is supposed to provide.

We consider school to be the launch pad to successful adulthood. To be sure the people who enrich our children’s days — through supportive services, the arts, physical education or even not being so harried they can’t remember everyone’s names — are in our schools is our collective responsibility. Let’s be proactive and forceful to ensure we have more adults in the schools.

Sarah Buttenwieser