According to Act 71, as of the 2015-2016 school year, districts are required to provide professional development to educators and staff of students grade 6-12 regarding suicide prevention. For each suicide death among young people, there may be as many as 100–200 suicide attempts (McIntosh, 2010). Approximately one out of every 15 high school students attempts suicide each year (CDC, 2010a).
In this Act 71 training, participants will review the prevalence of suicide, risk factors, warning signs, school-related epidemiology, protective factors, and prevention. Participants will be able to complete the four hours of suicide prevention training to meet the requirements set forth in Act 71 of 2014. This law requires school entities to: (1) adopt a youth suicide awareness and prevention policy; and (2) provide ongoing professional development in youth suicide awareness and prevention for professional educators in buildings serving students in grades 6-12.
Learning Path Outcomes:
- Discuss the prevalence of suicide and why it occurs;
- Review the Pennsylvania Youth Suicide Prevention Plan;
- Review possible links to bullying, substance abuse, and sexual orientation;
- Inventory school policies and resources in your area;
- Identify and distinguish between risk factors, protective factors, and warning signs;
- Recognize resources that can provide support to students at risk for suicide; and
- Meet Pennsylvania’s Act 71 requirements.