Message to the WPSD Community

Lansdowne, PA – February 9, 2024

The William Penn School District is in mourning as we have lost a student to gun violence and one of our families, including three children, in a tragic event, during this past week. Please see a letter from WPSD superintendent Dr. Becoats that was shared with our staff this morning.


Dear WPSD Team,

This has been a very difficult week in the William Penn School District community, and I am still in shock with everything that has happened. The two tragedies that occurred are unfathomable and senseless. The death of a child for any reason pains me greatly. To lose one of our students to gun violence and then one of our families in this tragic event leaves me heartbroken.

I know that it is hard to comprehend and to do anything else at this time. As for myself, I can’t stop thinking about it all. The death of anyone puts a lot of things into perspective. Our goal now is to continue to support each other, our students, and families the best we can. The way we do that is to continue to follow a schedule as close to normal as possible while giving grace and space for our school community to process and grieve.

As always, we have resources available to support you and our students. Our counselors are available and are being supported by the Emergency Response Team from the DCIU.

As a reminder, we also have the Employee Assistance Program which provides counseling services for staff. I encourage you to use as many resources as possible to help you during this time. It is important, especially during unprecedented times like this, to express and share how you are feeling and to be there for each other.

I hope that you are able to get some rest and recovery this weekend. From the bottom of my heart, I truly appreciate you and the work that you do with our students and in our schools. I am here to support you as we try to process what happened, mourn those we have lost, and heal from these senseless tragedies.


Dr. Becoats