Condolences pour in for 4-year-old girl who died outside Dubai school

Sarwat Nasir/Dubai
Filed on November 5, 2019 | Last updated on November 6, 2019 at 07.38 pm
Dubai school, Condolences, Dubai, accident, crime

The mother and child were crushed between the moving vehicle and a parked car.

Condolences have poured in for a four-year-old child who was killed outside of her school in Dubai's Jebel Ali after a driver reversed into her.

The Greenfield International School (GIS) has confirmed the incident, saying to parents that they have psychologists on-site to help provide counsel and support to students.

The Dubai Police said a motorist accidentally stepped on the accelerator pedal instead of the brake while reversing the car. The mother and child were crushed between the moving vehicle and a parked car. The mother sustained injuries and is recovering in the hospital.

In a communication to parents, Principal of GIS Allan Weston said: "Last night I wrote to you to share the news of a traffic accident that occurred yesterday afternoon outside of our school. Since my email you will now have undoubtedly read the news where the police have confirmed that at approximately 3:40pm, one of our KG students and her mother were hit by a car reversing at speed in the parking lot outside the school grounds. We can now sadly confirm that our student, Insiya Vasihi, was tragically killed in the accident and her mother sustained multiple fractures and is now recovering in hospital.

 "Today at school we have provided all day counselling support to the children and staff, and especially to those who knew Insiya well. We also have psychologists from The LightHouse on-site to help provide guidance on how to communicate, counsel and support our primary and secondary students through this tragic period of grief and mourning. We have enlisted their support for the coming weeks, and we will also be arranging parent sessions to help guide you on how to support your child at home through their grieving process."

The head of primary at GIS, Andrew Mitchell, also communicated with the parents, saying that it is "important to communicate the message sensitively and calmly to the students in the school in a way they can understand".

For the older students, they are communicating via the leadership team, with the help of professional grief counselors, in class groups, with individual conversations for those students in need.

The letter further said: "For our younger students in KG1 - Grade 2 their understanding and processing of loss and grief is at a different developmental stage and requires an age-appropriate approach. We intend to speak with our younger students this afternoon, again supported by professional grief counselors, about the incident and provide them a space to share how they may be feeling.

"They may not immediately fully comprehend the situation as young children do not always understand the concept of bereavement. The conversations will be led by the homeroom teachers who know the students the best and are best able to create a supportive environment. We anticipate that our students will react in a variety of ways. We will monitor any immediate or delayed reactions they may have and provide support over the coming days and weeks. The guidance we have had is that we should try to maintain as regular a schedule as possible whilst responding to individual needs. I would encourage you to similarly maintain a sense routine at home and be alert to any changes to emotions or behaviour."

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