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(WISH) — Some families may be dealing with anxiety over schools reopening and whether parents should send their children back to school or decide to have them stay home.

Laura McClinn, who is a mother of three in Perry Township, says she wants to make the best decisions for her family.

“I personally do have a little anxiety about my girls going back, just coming and going. I have one that will be a sophomore and one that will be an eighth grader and then Jordan’s a fifth grader. He also has a dad who’s going to work and going back and Jordan is high-risk,” said McClinn.

Jordan has Duchenne muscular dystrophy and will be doing remote learning.

“I miss hanging out with all my friends, but other than that I don’t really miss school,” said Jordan.

McClinn started the Best Day Ever Foundation, a nonprofit that helps other families with life-threatening illnesses navigate through their Medicaid benefits.

“It’s hard to find an agency that will allow the parent to be the one actually providing that care so it’s a tricky thing to navigate,” she said. “You can get someone to come in and care for your child while you go to work.”

Going back to school won’t be the same this year. Figuring out child care and how to prevent kids from contracting the virus can raise stress levels.

“Whatever the parents are feeling going into the school year, even if they think they’re doing a great job hiding it their kids are going to take those cues so it’s important for them to be calm, encouraging and positive about the school year,” said Jennie Voelker, a licensed clinical social worker and the director of youth clinical services at Community Behavioral Health.

Voelker said children experience anxiety when they’re adapting to something new. So it’s important for adults to explain why changes are happening to all kids, no matter their age.

It’s also recommended to include them in the decision-making process. Having an open line of communication and acknowledging teenager’s feelings can help too.

Younger kids can also overcome anxiety by introducing social stories.

“Social stories are stories that explain what’s going on in a child’s language so sometimes that helps parents to be able to have the conversation,” Voelker said.

Click here for more resources on how families can navigate through stress.

Coronavirus links

Indiana coronavirus timeline

With information from the Indiana Department of Health through March 4, 2021, this timeline reflects updated tallies of deaths and positive tests prior to that date.

Perry Township vandalism

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Obscene graffiti was scrawled on a south-side home last week, and the family who lives there says video shows the vandals were no older than 10 or 11.

Homeowner Joshua Hlawnmual said it happened in the middle of the day Aug. 9 while he was out shopping with his family.

His surveillance video shows several kids outside the home. The images were spray-painted on his garage door and mailbox, as well as on Meridian Gardens Lane.

“I saw it on my garage door and also here (the street), the mailbox, and I called police,” Hlawnmual said.

He says the most shocking thing about this incident is how young the vandals appear to be.

“They’re little kids: 10 years, 7, maybe 4, and I don’t know how could those little kids could do this kind of bad stuff,” Hlawnmual added.

However, this isn’t the first time his property has been vandalized or the first crime in the neighborhood. The Meridian Gardens homeowners’ association said neighbors have been looking out for each other.

“We’ve had cars broken into in the neighborhood, houses broken into in the neighborhood. It seems like they slowly … it stops for a little bit then it slowly creeps back in. It’s just one of those things like, what’s next?”said Travis Taylor, homeowners’ association board member.

“Even recently, we as an HOA stick together (more) than ever before because this similar bad stuff not just happens to my family but also my neighbors,” said Hlawnmual.

The HOA said they bought LED lights to place outside of homes for neighbors to keep on at night. They’ve also added lights on mailboxes, hoping those will decrease crime in the area if everyone stays vigilant.

“Little things like that and then proactively ask people to make sure that they’re locking their cars, doing everything possible to try to keep the neighborhood safe,” Taylor said.