The best approach to school-based suicide prevention activities is teamwork that includes teachers, school doctors, school nurses, school psychologists and school social workers, working in close cooperation with community agencies.

Having suicidal thoughts now and then is not abnormal. They are part of the normal development process in childhood and adolescence, as are working on existential problems and trying to understand life, death, and the meaning of life. Questionnaire surveys show that more than half of upper-secondary students report that they have entertained thoughts of suicide. Young people need to discuss these topics with adults. Suicidal thoughts become abnormal in children and adolescents when the realization of those thoughts seems to be the only way out of their difficulties. There is then a serious risk of attempted suicide or suicide.

Resources & Guides for Educators

This resource guide is designed to help educators understand more about mental health in order to promote the mental health of all students. It provides information to help educators recognize students who may be experiencing distress and support them in their pathway to care. The guide discusses the role of educators in recognizing students who may be at risk of developing mental health problems and outlines ways in which educators can promote the mental health and well-being of all students. It offers suggestions for talking about mental health with parents and students. It also provides information about the types of mental health problems children and youth may experience, including the signs, symptoms, causes, and frequency of different types of problems and their potential impact on student learning. Most importantly, it offers strategies for enhancing students’ ability to function at school both academically and socially.

By the Hamilton-Wentworth Student Support Leadership Initiative, in collaboration with the Child and Youth Mental Health Information Network.

Lots of times kids will say they’re not bullying, they’re ‘just joking’ – in fact, it’s the number one reason for being mean online. Other times, people will play down how serious the situation really is. It can be hard speaking out when cyber bullying happens for a whole pile of reasons, but what you say and do is really important.

In this lesson students discuss reasons why they might be reluctant to intervene when they witness cyber bullying and identify ways that they can help without making things worse. They then use this interactive tool to help them decide how to navigate scenarios relating to being a witness to bullying, and share their experiences to help them understand how important it is to think carefully before you act. Finally, students learn about “decision trees” and other info-graphics and create an original info-graphic to communicate what they’ve learned about how to intervene when they witness cyber bullying. You can make an impact: How witnesses react can make a BIG difference in stopping cyber bullying and making it hurt less.

By Telus / Media Smarts