Suicide in Schools

Prevention, Assessment, Intervention & Postvention

With international thought-leader Dr. Jonathan Singer (USA)

Suicide is the second leading cause of death among young people 12 – 24 years. We believe we can change this!

Schools are an ideal location to identify and respond to suicide risk. Because of the tension between the school’s educational mission and the socio-emotional demands of addressing suicide risk, school counselors often find themselves addressing suicidal crises without clear institutional guidance and support. The purpose of this workshop is to provide an overview of school-based prevention, assessment, intervention and postvention.

In the first half of the day we will discuss a multisystemic framework for understanding a suicidal crisis; the role of the school and school personnel in identifying and responding to student suicide risk; identifying suicide risk factors, protective factors, warning signs, and resilience; and the steps in developing a school crisis response plan with a specific focus on the special situation of a suicidal crisis. We will end the first half reviewing current suicide prevention programs and discussing the state of the evidence.

The second half of the day will review suicide assessment and intervention in a suicidal crisis. We will discuss the purpose and use of a screening tool, risk assessment tool, safety planning tool, and a suicide risk monitoring tool. We will review techniques for eliciting suicidal ideation and intent. Because youth suicidal crises always involve parents/guardians, we will discuss counseling techniques from Attachment-Based Family Therapy (the only family therapy designed to reduce suicidal ideation in youth), and how to respond to parents after telling them that you assessed their child for suicide risk. We will end the day by reviewing postvention. How to respond in the first 24 hours, and the days and months after a suicide death. The workshop will include information about adolescent development, technology and social media, the science of suicide, and suicide prevention resources.


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