Pine-Richland High School Freshman Dies at Home

School district activates its crisis intervention team to help students cope with emotions.

Pine-Richland School District notified parents this evening about the death of a high school freshman.

“We deeply regret to inform you about a loss of one of our own in our school community ... (who) passed away at home today,” Superintendent Mary Bucci wrote in an email.

Details about the death were not released.

“This loss is sure to raise many emotions, concerns and questions for our entire school, especially our students,” Bucci wrote. “Please realize at this stage, information is very limited. As in all cases involving individual students, we have to be sensitive to the privacy of the family.”

The district activated its crisis intervention team to make school psychologists and counselors available to students to help them deal with grief. 

School counselors may be reached by calling the school's main office. Pine-Richland schools lead psychologist Maura Paczan and/or PR school psychologist Melissa Ramirez will be available at 724-443-7230, ext. 6500.

The district also recommends contacting the Caring Place, a grieving center for children, adults and families located in Pittsburgh and in the Warrendale/Cranberry area. Click here for the Caring Place's website.

Other resources available include the Resolve Crisis Network at 888-796-8226 and the Student & Young Adult Hot Line at 412-820-HELP.

“Our primary concern is with the care and well-being of our students,” Bucci wrote. “When we lose a student, we lose a member of our school family.”

crosbycat June 21, 2012 at 01:31 PM
Ran out of room again - Susan, I am so sorry that your daughter is having a hard time. You are her best advocate, and you are not wrong or misguided to expect adults around these girls to intervene both at school and in Girl Scouts. Not everyone at PR ignores these issues - we had one great 2nd grade Wexford teacher who got on my son's bus and corrected some 3rd graders for name calling. She was confident and authoritative and it never happened again. And at Eden Hall we had more bus problems and I asked the Guidance Counselor for help and she knew who the problem kid was and got the bullying to stop. I hope next year your daughter will be with a better group of kids, and I hope that the school will keep her with her friends and away from those bad girls. Its very hard on the kids to have to start over with friendships year after year, but it happens because the prevailing theory in education now is if you mix everyone up and prevent "best friends" from forming, the kids will all be more social and there will be less bullying.
Kelly Burgess June 21, 2012 at 02:24 PM
You should not listen to rumors. If you don't know the families, you should not speculate at all. As for bullying, name-calling is bullying and should be dealt with firmly and unequivocally. Choosing not to play with someone is a personal choice. Not all behavior you don't like, or that makes your child feel sad, is bullying. There's only so much the school can do to make everyone skip happily through recess hand-in-hand singing "Make New Friends, Keep the Old." We can't regulate every single childhood behavior to fit our definition of "nice."
Susan M. June 21, 2012 at 10:27 PM
Kelly, I am very offended by your comment. I did not say I wanted the school to "make the girls play with my daughter"...I did say I was at the school for a true bullying incident and this was also brought up. Maybe I was venting because I get frustrated by some of the behavior these girls exhibit, but I was not looking for PR to make my daughter popular!! We can NOT blame the schools for this behavior. We absolutely can blame the PARENTS for this behavior!! Teach your kids right from wrong. Simple.
Kelly Burgess June 22, 2012 at 11:05 AM
You said, "I went to the school for another bullying episode and brought this up, and nothing has changed." The implication being that you expected the school administrators to take some action. The next commenter interpreted that the same way, as she said, "you are not wrong or misguided to expect adults around these girls to intervene both at school and in Girl Scouts…" We can agree that kindness begins at home, and so does taking responsibility. I jumped on to this thread because I was disturbed by the way the school district was being blamed for issues that have nothing to do with them. It's nice that PR provides counseling when something happens to a child in their district, but, that's not really their job nor are they responsible for tragedies that happen outside the halls of the school, any more than they would be responsible if a child was in a car accident on Route 8. You can be assured that PRSD would love to eradicate bullying, and not just bullying, but all behaviors that are a distraction in the classroom: disruptive or rude behavior, tired, hungry or poorly-prepared children, and children who suffer from mental illnesses or have disturbing home lives that make it difficult for them to concentrate. There's only so much a school can do: kids are only there for 7 hours.
crosbycat June 28, 2012 at 03:24 PM
Here is an article to educate Kelly on emotional bullying, and since Pine-Richland wants to be involved in all aspects of our children (e.g character development per the 2010-2011 calendar, citizenship), it is their responsibility to provide a safe environment for our kids. http://education.families.com/blog/social-exclusion-at-school-emotional-bullying


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