Children who escaped the Connecticut massacre returned to classes yesterday in a refurbished school named after their old one.
Newtown superintendent of schools Janet Robinson said the pupils' new home, the former Chalk Hill Middle School, in neighbouring town Monroe, had been renamed Sandy Hook Elementary School and that the Sandy Hook staff had been behind the decision.
"That's who they are. They're the Sandy Hook family," Ms Robinson said after a news conference at a park in Monroe a few miles from the school. She added that the renaming would allow staff and children to keep "their identity and a comfort level".
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The Newtown school where the shootings occurred remains closed and guarded by police. Town chiefs have not decided on the building's future. Children attending other schools in Newton went back yesterday.
It has been nearly three weeks since the December 14 massacre, when gunman Adam Lanza killed 20 students and six staff. Lanza also killed his mother at the home they shared in Newtown before the school shootings, which ended when he shot himself as police arrived.
Police have not released any details about a motive.
Officers guarded the outside of the Monroe school, about seven miles from the old school, and told reporters to stay away.
Asked about the level of security at the new school, Lieutenant Keith White of Monroe police said: "I think right now it has to be the safest school in America."
Teachers attended staff meetings at the new school and were visited by Governor Dannel Malloy, Lt White said.
Donna Page, a retired Sandy Hook principal, will lead the new school.