NEWTOWN, Conn. — On Wednesday, the fourth anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings, the town of Newtown will honor the 26 victims with 15 minutes of silence, according to the Hartford Courant .
On Dec. 14, 2012, 20 first-graders and six educators were killed by a lone gunman in one of the nation's worst mass shootings.
Newtown will hold a somber, silent reflection from 9:30 to 9:45 a.m., when the shooting occurred at the school, Newtown First Selectman Pat Llodra told the Courant.
Newtown School Superintendent Joseph Erardi Jr. said a full day of classes will be held on Wednesday, with quiet reflection.
"Our elementary and intermediate school staff will continue to realize that students’ knowledge of the events of 12/14 vary greatly. If requested by parents, school staff will provide talking points for parents to assist them with personal conversations with their child," Erardi said in a statement.
"We will start the day with a moment of silence in all schools."
Erardi said all school messages would be age appropriate.
"I am certain that many of you will join me in finding private space for personal reflection as the Newtown community continues to recover from an unconscionable act of violence," Erardi said.
The students who attend Sandy Hook Elementary School are now attending classes back in Newtown. A new building, which replaced the one where the deadly shootings occurred, opened for classes in late August.
The 86,800-square-foot school includes multi-colored glass panels, colorful sunshades and open courtyards. The building reflects a theme of nature, including a mural of a flock of birds in flight in the main office and rotating kinetic mobiles of metallic leaves in the lobby.
The old Sandy Hook School was razed after the deadly shootings. From January 2013 until June 2016, the Sandy Hook students attended classes in a building in neighboring Monroe.
Erardi said about 60 percent of the original staff members returned to the new school. Of the students who were enrolled in the building that sad day, about 65 to 70 returned. They left as kindergartners, but are now fourth-graders.
"The intent of this building is a warm and comfortable environment for our students," Erardi said.