The superintendent of the Uvalde, Texas, school district announced in a letter on Wednesday that students and staff will not return to Robb Elementary School following last week’s deadly mass shooting.
The letter noted that students would return to other campuses as plans continued to be discussed.
“Students and staff will not be returning to the Robb Elementary campus. We are working through plans on how to serve students on other campuses and will provide that information as soon as it is finalized. We are also working with agencies to help us identify improvements on all UCISD campuses,” Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District Superintendent Hal Harrell wrote.
The letter also confirmed that the district would continue to cooperate with the ongoing law enforcement investigation of the tragedy that killed 19 fourth-grade students and two teachers at the hands of an 18-year-old shooter.
“UCISD has and will continue to work with law enforcement who are investigating the event and realize that many questions remain. Because the investigation is ongoing and information is evolving, we are going to reserve comment until all state and federal agencies have completed their review,” Harrell wrote.
The letter was released one day after Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R-TX) announced a state of disaster for the city of Uvalde on Tuesday that will expedite state and local resources to assist the community.
The declaration to assist those impacted by the tragedy at Robb Elementary School also follows growing controversy regarding the actions of local law enforcement responding to the incident.
“The community of Uvalde has been left devastated by last week’s senseless act of violence at Robb Elementary School and should not have to encounter any difficulty in receiving the support needed to heal,” Abbott said in a statement released regarding the declaration.
“This disaster declaration frees up the many resources available through the State of Texas and local jurisdictions to continue providing much needed support to all who were impacted and work in the community unencumbered by regulations unnecessary to respond to this tragedy. All of Texas stands with Uvalde, and we are prepared to provide support through all available means,” he added.
Also on Tuesday, Abbott announced that the Governor’s Public Safety Office has made available a $5 million investment into establishing a long-term Family Resiliency Center (FRC) in Uvalde County. The FRC is designed to serve as a hub for community services, such as psychological first aid, crisis counseling, and behavioral health services for survivors, first responders, and those in the community experiencing vicarious trauma, including school-based mental health services for students and staff, according to a press release from the governor’s office.
“Texas continues providing all available resources to fully assist and support the Uvalde community through their heartbreak,” Abbott wrote. “The Family Resiliency Center in Uvalde County will play an integral role in our mission to ensure those in mourning and healing following last week’s tragedy have easily accessible and readily available resources. Every member of the Uvalde community will have access to the critical mental health resources they need at this center as they process and heal during this difficult time.”