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ERIC Number: EJ868934
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Dec
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1529-8957
School Crisis Aftermath: Care for the Caregivers
Paine, Cathy Kennedy
Principal Leadership, v10 n4 p12-16 Dec 2009
"Professional" crisis caregivers (e.g., emergency responders, mental health providers, medical professionals, victim assistance counselors, and faith leaders) are trained to handle exposure to images of destruction and loss and to help victims or survivors cope with the impact of a crisis. They try to help individuals, schools, and communities reestablish their balance in a world that seems radically different from what they previously knew; connect them to available resources in their communities, cities, and states; and deal with their feelings of guilt, helplessness, anger, fear, and grief. Although most individuals will not require intensive services, caregivers sometimes are needed to provide ongoing support to individuals who are feeling anxious, stressed, or fearful about the crisis and its effect on their future. Caregivers may also help frontline responders who may have experienced the horror of death and destruction and the immediate aftermath of an event. Caring for the victims of crises is both physically and emotionally draining. Whether it is in the aftermath of a serious crisis or during an extended period of high stress, the repeated stories of crisis-affected individuals, as well as the unrelenting demand for support, may result in burnout for crisis caregivers. Stress management is key to effective crisis response. Crisis caregivers can manage and alleviate stress by taking care of themselves while helping others. This article provides some personal and professional suggestions that will help prevent burnout. Parents, teachers, administrators, and emergency professionals all play an important role in helping students cope with crises and return to the learning environment. As caregivers to those who need support after tragic events, all adults must take good care of themselves so that they are able to take good care of those in their charge.
National Association of Secondary School Principals. 1904 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191-1537. Tel: 800-253-7746; Tel: 703-860-0200; Fax: 703-620-6534; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A