Grief counselors on-hand at JCPS school after students killed in - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Grief counselors on-hand at JCPS school after students killed in apparent murder-suicide

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Classmates, teachers and staff at a south Louisville elementary school are mourning the loss of two young students killed last Friday by their mother.

Jefferson County Public Schools grief counselors were on-hand Monday morning at Gilmore Lane Elementary. Counselors say it's a difficult task, considering the fact that the boys were just eight and 10 years old.

Avery Hooper, age 10, and 8-year-old Aairden Hooper died last Friday at their home on Bluebird Avenue. Police say the two young boys were shot and killed by their mother, Ashley, who was also found dead. Investigators believe she killed herself.

Sam Cowan, Principal of Gilmore Lane Elementary, and JCPS Superintendent Doctor Marty Pollio say they learned about the situation Friday night. Principal Cowan spent much of the weekend preparing a plan to discuss the tragedy with his school.

A crisis team made up of volunteer counselors from across the district is on-hand now for the students.

"We are a small school -- one of the smallest schools in the district with only approximately 270 students," said Cowan. "So we have very much a family atmosphere in the school. Everybody is pulling together, everybody has a role today, everybody is pulling through and meeting the needs of our kiddos."

"We want to have this team that's available to the school throughout the week and the year as problems occur," Dr. Pollio said. "We just want to be here to support the school and the families."

Dr. Pollio also says every child in the school will have information sent home with them Monday for families to access. He says the district will also share resources and tips on how to discuss situations like this with your child. 

Officials say the support doesn't just stop today: the counselors will be on-hand for as long as they are needed.

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