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'We can get through this together' | Counselors at Austin-East High School available to help students, staff

Counselors are available to meet either in-person or virtually for as long as students and staff need. It's a free service and at no cost to students.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn — Students and staff at Austin-East High School are dealing with a lot right now.

On the other side of grief is hope and healing. 

There are counselors available to anyone who needs to talk about what happened.

Knox County Schools Director of School Culture Janice Cook said multiple counselors are available either in-person or virtually for students.

"We can get through this together," said Cook. "And I think that's the message you know? We're going to get through this together.... We're going to walk with you."  

There is a new virtual counseling option because of the pandemic, Cook said. 

This counseling service will be available for students and staff as long as they need it.

"Austin-East students have advisory sessions, so they can reach out to their advisors or teachers may reach out to parents," Cook said. "It's a two-way street. We just hope that we laid out an easy pathway for students to get the support that they need."

The District's Crisis Team is made of up therapists, social workers and counselors for situations just like this.

Also, Cook said Austin-East High School is a trauma informed school so teachers and staff have extra training from the State to help students. 

Cook said teachers are keeping an extra eye on their students. 

Parents, if you notice a change in your child's behavior or other subtle changes, sign up for counseling. It's free and at no cost to students.

For more information on how to sign up or additional mental health resources available at Austin-East High School click here.