Thursday, January 5, 2017

Youth Suicide Prevention Parent Workshop - Tues Jan 10 at 5 PM

     On January 10th at 5pm, right before our monthly PTO meeting, Rachel Petraska and Amy Sayre will be hosting a dialogue for adults on the UMatter Youth Suicide Prevention curriculum that we have been implementing in the middle school for the past 5 weeks.  We would like to give parents and caregivers the opportunity to ask questions and do some learning themselves about this important topic.  In addition to describing the curricula and resources for educating youth about suicide prevention, Rachel and Amy will describe school and community strategies for prevention and help identify risk factors and warning signs for suicide.  
 Over the past month we have been teaching a unit in all seventh and eighth grade classrooms addressing suicide prevention, using a research-based curriculum titled Lifelines: A Suicide Prevention Program.   Lifelines is a comprehensive researched-based prevention program that targets the entire school community by providing suicide awareness materials for administrators, faculty and staff, parents, and 8th grade students.  The Lifelines Curriculum was chosen by the Vermont Youth Suicide Prevention Project as the best program for implementation in Vermont schools. 
 The curriculum teaches students:
 the warning signs and relevant facts about suicide
 how to recognize the threat of suicidal thoughts and behaviors and how to take troubled peers seriously
 how to respond to troubled peers 
 to demonstrate positive attitudes about intervention and help-seeking behaviors
 How to identify resources and understand how resources will respond 
Through this curriculum, students learn that it’s important to talk about distressing or overwhelming feelings with adults in their lives.   There is also a session specifically designed for parents that we will be presenting to any interested families next Tuesday, Jan 10 at 5 PM in Lisa Phelps room.  This will be immediately preceding our monthly PTO meeting which will begin at 6 PM in the same room (comes complete with pizza dinner if you stay).  
In order to help us plan - please complete this one minute survey if you are planning to attend:   LifelInes Parent Session Survey
Best regards,
Rachel Luks Petraska - 5-8 School Counselor
Amy Sayre - 4-8 Student Assistance Professional

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