Chapter 3: Planning for when a student’s family member has died
Contacting the bereaved family
“It somehow escaped us to make sure the school absence message didn’t go through to his parents. They were very upset to receive the automated call and I can’t help but feel we failed the family somehow in our support of their son’s death”. – Principal
As the principal or vice principal, you should make the initial contact with the family following the death of a student’s family member to create a plan for follow-up by a designated contact person. Below are some considerations you will want to keep in mind for your conversation with the family and also in planning for immediately after the death.
Click on each box for more information.
See also:For additional information, see Module 2 – Supporting Grieving Students, Chapter 3 – When a family member has died; and Nine tips for speaking with a grieving person in Chapter 1 – Communication strategies. Preparing children for funerals and memorialsFunerals, memorials, and other ritualsAttending Funerals, Memorials, and Other Rituals