Sonoma County Office of Education

Statement from Superintendent Herrington on Elementary School Shooting in Uvalde, Texas

05/24/2022 -

Dear Sonoma County Families and School Communities,

It is heartbreaking and infuriating to read today of another school shooting that has now taken the lives of at least 19 elementary school students and two teachers in Uvalde, Texas. This senseless act of violence by a teenager who was barely an adult is the deadliest shooting at a grade school since the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut, and it comes in the same month as racist mass shootings in Buffalo, New York, and Laguna Beach.

We owe it to our students and teachers to provide a safe and secure environment for learning without turning our schools into fortresses. When parents or guardians send their children to our campuses, they should know they will return home safely at the end of the day.

Please know that our school districts are constantly evaluating the measures they have in place to keep their students and staff safe. But vigilance and commitment at the local level is no substitute for strong federal action and changes in our nation’s laws that will ensure tragedies like those in Uvalde, Newtown, Parkland, and Littleton, Colorado, among many others, stop happening.

How many more lives must be lost before we as a nation take action to address these senseless acts of gun violence?

My heart goes out to the families and school employees whose lives have been upended by these latest chapters in our long national story of gun violence.

Steven D. Herrington, Ph. D.
Sonoma County Superintendent of Schools