A+ A A-

2145 (P) - Suicide Prevention

BOARD POLICY Policy No. 2145 

The Board of Directors recognizes that suicide is a leading cause of death among youth and that suicidal indicators such as substance abuse and violence are complex issues that should be taken seriously. While district staff may recognize potentially suicidal youth and the district can make an initial risk assessment, the district cannot provide indepth mental health counseling. Instead, the board directs district staff to refer students who exhibit suicidal behaviors to an appropriate service for further assessment and counseling. 
District staff who have knowledge of a suicide threat must take the proper steps to support the student and to report this information to the building principal or designee who will, in turn, notify the appropriate school officials, the student’s family and appropriate resource services.

The board also recognizes the need for youth suicide prevention procedures. The district will adopt and, at the beginning of each school year, provide to all district staff,  including substitutes, a plan for recognizing, screening, referring and responding to students in emotional or behavioral distress. At a minimum, the plan will:
    • Identify training opportunities for staff on recognizing, screening and referral of  students in emotional or behavioral distress, including those who exhibit  indicators of substance abuse, violence or suicide;
    • Describe how to utilize the expertise of district staff trained in recognition, screening and referral;
    • Provide guidelines, based on staff expertise, for responding to suspicions, concerns or warning signs of emotional or behavioral distress;
    • Address development of partnerships with community organizations and  agencies for referral of students to support services, to include development of at least one memorandum of understanding between the district and one such entity;
    • Contain procedures for communication with parents;
    • Describe how staff should respond to a crisis situation where a student is in imminent danger to himself or herself or others;
    • Describe how the district will provide support to students and staff after an incident of violence or student suicide.
The superintendent will develop and implement the plan and a staff training schedule to
achieve the board’s goals and objectives.
Cross References: 
3207 Prohibition of Harassment, Intimidation and Bullying
2140 Guidance and Counseling
Legal References:
Washington professional educator standards board — Training program on youth suicide screening — Certificates for school nurses, social workers, psychologists, and counselors — Adoption of standards.
School Counselor Certification
Model school district plan for recognition, initial screening, and response to emotional or behavioral distress in students.
Plan for recognition, screening, and response to emotional or behavioral distress in students.
Management Resources
  2014 - December Issue
  2011 - April Issue
First Reading: May 17, 2016
Second Reading/Adoption: June 7, 2016

WALLA WALLA PUBLIC SCHOOLS • 364 South Park St. • Walla Walla, WA 99362 • Phone: 509-527-3000 • Fax: 509.529.7713

SS-logo-alert-transparent Safe Schools Tip Line: 855.976.8772