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Youth Suicide Prevention

Reach Out Web PosterIn our state, an average of two young people under 25 die by suicide every week and as many as one out of five students have seriously considered suicide in the last year. One in five 10 graders acknowledged on the 2012 Healthy Youth Survey that they had used an illegal drug in the last 30 days and about one in four had consumed alcohol in the last 30 days. One in twelve 10 graders reported a physical fight on school property in the last month and one in three 6 graders reported being bullied on school property in the last 30 days. About a third of Washington students report signs of depression within the last year. All of these problems have a greater impact among more vulnerable populations of students, such as those experiencing poverty, contact with the child welfare system, and identity-based discrimination.  These issues have a serious impact on students and families in schools and communities across the state of Washington.

Walla Walla Public Schools recognizes the school plays a unique and important role in the prevention of youth suicide, violence, and substance abuse and in the identification and treatment of mental health disorders in our community. Walla Walla Public Schools has developed a plan aimed at prevention, support for students experiencing emotional and behavioral distress and supporting school communities after a student’s death. This plan is shared with staff and is reviewed and updated annually.

WWPS Suicide Prevention Policy

WWPS Suicide Prevention Procedures

Suicidal Warning Signs

  • Talking about wanting to die or to kill themselves
  • Looking for a way to kill themselves, like searching online or buying a gun
  • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live
  • Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain
  • Talking about being a burden to others
  • Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs
  • Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly
  • Sleeping too little or too much
  • Withdrawing or isolating themselves
  • Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge
  • Extreme mood swings

Source: Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Suicide Reporting Process

Crisis Response Resources:

  1. Emergency Response: 911
  2. SafeSchools Alerts Tip Line (pdf)
  3. Local Crisis Hotline: (509) 524-2999
  4. Crisis Text Line: 741741
  5. National LifeLine: (800) 273-TALK (8255)
  6. Comprehensive Mental Health Center (Walla Walla): (509) 524-2920

NOTE: It is important to share information with the school principal and counselor regarding student health and well-being issues.

WWPS Training

MOMO Challenge - Parent Information

A Message from the Superintendent: Momo Challenge

Dear Families,
The “Momo Challenge” is the latest social media challenge directed at children and young adults. We are urging families to become aware of this challenge and to use this as a reminder to speak to your children about internet safety and to monitor your children’s use of social media, gaming and the internet.

The “Momo Challenge” can be found on various social media and gaming platforms and is disturbing in nature. The communications through the “Momo Challenge” begin with a chat that asks the receiver to perform small tasks and then escalates to more serious violent acts and request photographs for proof. If the “Momo Challenge” is true, it is just one example of dangerous “games” through social media that has a negative impact on students and their social interactions. There are many reports that the "Momo Challenge" is a viral hoax.

Fostering an atmosphere of openness and transparency about online safety and activity ensures that children can thrive. Please take the time to speak explicitly about internet safety with your children. Review the attached resource from National Online Safety regarding various tips for parents and the Rules ‘N Tools Checklist to help guide your conversation.

If you would like additional resources, please check out the website:

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact your child’s school. We have additional resources and support services available to support you and your children.



Dr. Wade Smith, Superintendent

Parent Resources:
MOMO Challenge – What Parents Need to Know

NASP information - "13 Reasons Why"

National Association of School Psychologists information on "13 Reasons Why”

NASP information - "13 Reasons Why"

National Association of School Psychologists information on "13 Reasons Why”

"13 Reasons Why" Season 2 Parent Tips

Regional Resources

National Resources

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  |  Online Tip Reporting System