Teachers and administrators at North Haven High School met Thursday morning before the start of school to share the news of the death Wednesday night of a 16-year-old boy who was hit by a car while riding his bike.
Principal Russell Dallai said that administrators organized the meeting "to share the tragic news with the adults. This is a great loss for them as well, it is very difficult news, and they had to be ready for the students."
The while riding his bicycle on Clintonville Road near Country Way. Police have not identified the boy or the driver.
Dallai said that when the 1,200 students arrived, the news was shared and a moment of silence was held. The school made the theater available to stduents who wanted "the opportunity to reflect silently," Dallai said. The library was open for students who wanted to talk about the tragedy.
Dallai said counselors and mental health professionals were on site to offer assistance as needed.
In addition, several members of the clergy from town came to the school, he said.
"They are kind enough to reach out to us in times of crisis and ask what we need," Dallai said of the clergy. "It is so generous and wonderful and we are very appreciative."
Dallai said the school shut off the bell system that moves students from class to class, and whle keeping somewhat to a regular schedule, gave students the option of being in class or being with others to talk.
"Sometimes structure is helpful," he said. "We need to allow the kids to grieve as they need to grieve. Some would rather be in class, others want to talk. The vast number of students chose to be in class, and that is a credit to our teachers. They gave them the opportunity in class to talk."
Dallai said teachers and administrators will continue to monitor how students are feeling Friday and provide whatever services are needed.