Statement from SRCD President Vonnie C. McLoyd and Executive Director Saima Hedrick on the Shootings at The Covenant School in Nashville, Tennessee


Our nation once again must grapple with the news that a shooter has taken the lives of innocent people – this time three innocent nine-year-old children and three adults at The Covenant School in Nashville, Tennessee.

According to CNN, this event marks “the 19th shooting at a school or university so far in 2023 that left at least one person wounded.” We must do better to protect our communities and to keep our children safe.

SRCD, once again, shares the following resources from developmental science on how trauma affects children. Share these resources with your communities and policymakers.

Helpful Resources Informed by the Developmental Sciences:

  • Talking to Children About Tragedies & Other News Events: How to talk about tragedy with children across a variety of ages and developmental needs. From and based on an interview with Dr. David Schonfeld, a developmental-behavioral pediatrician and an expert in school crisis and bereavement.
  • Helping Your Children Manage Distress in the Aftermath of Shooting: Tips on how to talk with children and manage their stress from clinical and school psychologists. From the American Psychological Association with expert advice from clinical and school psychologists, Drs. Ronald Palomares, Lynn Bufka, and Robin Gurwitch.
  • Empowering Communities to Prevent Mass Shootings: Summary of how research can inform new strategies to reach people at risk of committing a violent act. From the American Psychological Association.
  • Research on Gun violence. List of science resources summarizing the effects of gun violence on society. From the American Psychological Association.
  • Gun Violence: Prediction, Prevention, and Policy. Report by a panel of experts summarizing the science on the complexities underlying gun violence and evidence-based recommendations for prediction, prevention, and policy. Written by an American Psychological Association task force composed of psychologists and other researchers.

SRCD offers condolences and heart-felt support to the students, families, faculty, and staff at The Covenant School as they grapple with the aftermath of this horrendous act of violence and begin to heal.

Vonnie C. McLoyd
SRCD President

Saima K. Hedrick
SRCD Executive Director