Forefront Suicide Prevention in Schools (FIS) is a three-year program that supports a cohort of high schools to transform their culture around suicide. We provide tools, resources, support, and training for each school to develop a comprehensive suicide prevention and mental health promotion program. Currently, two FIS cohorts encompass 29 high schools in King County and three rural counties. Both include public, private and parochial schools (see list below).
Components that span all 3 years
– Multi-disciplinary teams of 6-8 members from each school, comprised of parents, students, teachers, administrators and school counselors.
– Utilization of the cohort model that includes shared learning and support to do this life-saving work.
– Forefront Suicide Prevention LEARN™ curriculum:
- 90-minute training by parents for parents.
- 90 or 60-minute training by teachers for teachers.
– 1-day fall academy for all teams each year.
– Half-day end-of-year meeting for all teams each year.
– Training for school based behavioral health staff that exceeds legislative training mandates.
Year One Components
– Revising or creating suicide prevention, intervention, assessment, re-entry, and recovery procedures.
– Enhanced linkages with mental health referral network.
Year Two Components (continues during Year Three)
Forefront Suicide Prevention LEARN™ curriculum:
- Teacher led student training.
- Student led peer-to-peer training.
Student-led behavioral health promotion week and public messaging activities.
Year Three Components
– Resources and training for schools on various mental health education and social/emotional learning (SEL) curricula.
– Individual support to schools in planning mental health education and social/emotional curricula.
TESTIMONIALS ABOUT FOREFRONT IN THE SCHOOLS
“This work has measurably improved our school’s ability to support students, faculty and families.” – School administrator
“We feel the Forefront trainings and coaching deserve a gold star. This has changed the way we work with students and parents and is doing exactly what we needed it to do.” – School administrator
“As a school counselor, I feel like I have a team of people working WITH me now to promote mental wellbeing and to prevent suicide. I no longer feel like I am the only one in the school tasked with this very large endeavor.” – School Counselor
“Being a part of the Forefront Suicide Prevention program, I am more confident in working with students with suicidal ideation and in other crisis situations than any time during my 27 years as a counselor.” – School Counselor
OTHER SCHOOL RESOURCES
As a requirement of House Bill 1336, each public school in Washington State is required to develop a crisis plan for responding to students in distress and in the aftermath of a suicide by June 2015. This model plan can be used as a template and includes protocols for intervention, re-entry after a crisis, and postvention after a suicide.
This model policy was created in collaboration with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the Trevor Project.
This comprehensive toolkit was developed by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and can be downloaded or ordered for free.
CURRENT FOREFRONT SUICIDE PREVENTION IN SCHOOLS COHORTS