JLDBB – Suicide Prevention and Response

The Board is committed to protecting the health, safety and welfare of its students and school community. This policy supports federal, state and local efforts to provide education on youth suicide awareness and prevention; to establish methods of prevention, intervention, and response to suicide or suicide attempt (“postvention”); and to promote access to suicide awareness, prevention and postvention resources.

A.  District Suicide Prevention Plan and Biennial Review

  1. Plan: The Superintendent, or their designee, shall develop and provide to the Board for approval, a coordinated, evidence-informed District Suicide Prevention Plan (the “Plan”) to include guidelines, protocols and procedures with the objectives of prevention, risk assessment, intervention and response to youth suicides and suicide attempts. The coordinated plan shall conform to the components required of public schools by RSA 193-J:2.
  2. Biennial Review: No less than once every two years, the Superintendent, or their designee, in consultation with input and evidence from community health or suicide prevention organizations, and District health and guidance personnel, shall update the District Suicide Prevention Plan, and present the same to the Board for review. Such Plan updates shall be submitted to the Board in time for appropriate budget consideration.

B.  Community-Based Suicide Prevention Efforts

  1. The District shall develop and maintain cooperative relationships with and coordination efforts between the District and community suicide prevention programs and personnel. This effort must also include cooperative efforts between the District and any chartered public schools within the District.
  2. The District shall, as appropriate, utilize community partners and assets to develop age appropriate student educational programming, such that all students receive information in the importance of safe and healthy choices and coping strategies, recognizing risk factors and warning signs of mental disorders and suicide in oneself and others, and providing help-seeking strategies for oneself or others, including how to engage school resources and refer friends for help.
  3. The District shall, as appropriate, utilize community partners and assets to develop or assist in the development of the annual staff training required under this policy.
  4. The District shall update, annually, a list of State and community crisis or intervention referral intervention information, and names and contact information for the suicide prevention contacts within each school. This information must be made readily available to students, parents, faculty, staff, and school volunteers.
  5. This information shall be disseminated via each school handbook (which is available on each school’s website).

C.  Training: The Superintendent, or their designee, shall assure that all school building faculty and staff, including contracted personnel and designated volunteers, receive at least two hours of training annually in suicide awareness and prevention. Such training may include such matters as youth suicide risk factors, warning signs, protective factors, intervention, response procedures, referrals, and postvention and local resources. This training should also be made available to third-party vendors, as appropriate.

D.  Statutory Considerations.  In adopting this policy, it is the intent of the District to fully comply with the provisions of RSA 193-J and to fulfill its statutory role in suicide prevention education as defined by RSA 193-J:2.  In doing such, the District does not assume any duty beyond that set forth in RSA 193-J.

Legal References:

RSA 193-J: Suicide Prevention Education

District Policy History:

First reading: 06/30/2020

Second reading: 06/30/2020

Adopted: 06/30/2020