SHREWSBURY, Mass. — After the tragic deaths of 26 people in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., students at Oak Middle School in Shrewsbury chose to reach out to Newtown Middle School students to show their sympathy. And they got a remarkable response.
Shrewsbury students mailed personalized cards, a banner and a monetary donation to their Newtown counterparts at the end of last year, Oak Middle School staff told the school committee Wednesday night. Oak faculty said they were amazed by the response from their students and at the reply from Newtown Middle School.
“They just wanted to do something to help,” Oak English teacher Maura Egan said.
Oak Middle School held a hat day, when students could wear a hat if they donated a dollar to Newtown Middle School. Staff and students donated more than $1,500. One student, who remained anonymous, donated $100 from his savings.
“I was totally astonished,” Egan said.
The Newtown students responded with cards of their own, relating personal experiences, including attending funerals for the victims and having their school locked-down for more than two hours. One student sent a CD of a performance of “Sandy Hook Angels” — the son of the student's piano teacher was one of the shooting victims.
A banner signed by Oak students now hangs in the Newtown cafeteria, Moran said. Newtown also mailed two boxes of Sandy Hook Strong bracelets as a gift.
“It was an indescribable day,” said language arts teacher Stephanie Moran. Oak Middle School parents should be proud for how their children reached out to others, she said.