Good afternoon Thornhill families,
Our school community faced a very frightening event today when a fire broke out in the Montclair district. As many students and families are already finding out about the incident, we want to make sure that we communicate with you what we know about the situation and what we will be doing to support students as they return to school tomorrow.
The fire was a few blocks away from the school at the area of Merriwood Drive and Crown Avenue.
We are deeply grateful to the Oakland Fire Department which responded quickly to the fire and was able to keep it from spreading beyond the several homes that were directly impacted. Still, it affected a lot of people. We know that many of our families and teachers that live in the neighborhood had to evacuate their homes. Unfortunately, one of our Thornhill families lost their home and vehicles. Our hearts go out to them during these difficult times.
Of course, this situation came during a public safety power shutoff that went into effect because of dangerous fire conditions and 29 years ago last week was the Oakland Hills Firestorm that impacted thousands of families in the same part of Oakland. Certainly, people in our community remain traumatized by that devastating incident and can be retraumatized when fires start in their neighborhood. And anyone directly or indirectly impacted by this fire today can benefit from support.
Our COST (Coordination Of Services Team) team met this morning and we will be having a staff meeting this afternoon to support teachers and give clear information about this unfortunate event.
Thornill, in partnership with OUSD central office, will be providing the following supports for students as we enter school tomorrow.
- Every classroom will discuss the facts of what happened and provide students with an opportunity to debrief today’s events.
- If there are students that need additional support, we will have trained staff that are available to support students in small groups. Your child’s teacher will communicate the details of these additional supports.
If you have any need for support, please contact your child’s teacher. Once again we are saddened by this unfortunate event and we are mindful of how such an event can be unsettling for you.