Statement of Raymond Pierce, President and CEO, Southern Education Foundation on the Shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas

MEDIA CONTACT: Gretchen Wright, 202-421-5830,

May 25, 2022 (Atlanta, Georgia)— The Southern Education Foundation released the following statement from its President and CEO regarding the Shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas:

Our hearts go out to the Uvalde community, and particularly the children, parents, teachers, school staff, families, and caregivers directly affected by this senseless tragedy.

The Southern Education Foundation believes that every child should have the right to attend school free from fear, and learn in a physically and emotionally safe environment so that they can receive the kind of education that provides opportunities for success. That right was stolen from the students at Robb Elementary School.

It is beyond comprehension that this is only one in a long line of school shootings across our nation as lawmakers fail to pass common sense laws to regulate gun ownership. We are now long past the time when it is acceptable to offer only thoughts and prayers, even as we extend deepest condolences to the Uvalde community. The time for action is long overdue and action must come now.

Every policymaker who believes that every child has the right to live and learn in an environment free of violence and the threat of violence must stand by that belief and join the effort to pass common sense legislation that increases school safety right now.

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Originally founded in 1867 to educate Black children and children from low-income families in the South, the Southern Education Foundation also has a long history of developing leaders in education and was a pivotal source of research and data to support legislation and litigation aimed at fighting inequity in education during the civil rights era. The organization today conducts leadership development, research, and advocacy to improve educational opportunities for students of color and students from low-income families and achieve educational equity in the southern U.S. It is based in Atlanta, Georgia. Find out more at