Local counselor offers support for parents in the wake of school shootings

DARLINGTON, SC (WBTW) - A local counselor held free support workshop called ‘Helping Children Cope with Violence in the Media: A Guide for Parents’ at the Darlington Presbyterian Church Sunday night.


The goal was to help parents comfort their children with recent trends of gun violence and threats on school campuses.


Laura Langley Smith, Licensed Professional Counselor and Clinical Supervisor of the Counseling Center of Florence says she noticed an increase in anxiety with kids after recent school shootings.

She held a small workshop to address concerns among parents.

She says the number one question she is asked is “Should I pull my child out of school?”


Other questions parents ask:

  • How can I ease my child’s anxiety?
  • Why is my child is afraid to go to school?
  • What should I do if my child wants to be homeschooled?
  • How can I monitor my child's social media?

“With everything in the media the violence in schools and things like there is a lot of anxiety with kids this was just an opportunity for parents to come in and share their concerns,” said Smith.


If your child is experiencing fears and/or anxiety related to recent school shootings.

Smith recommends:

  • Validate the child's feelings 
  • Talk about the incidents
  • Reassure child of school safety measures (give examples)
  • Pay attention to child’s behavioral or health-related changes

The agency is willing to help other churches with the workshop.

For more information on the agency call (843) 673-0054.

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