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Suicide Prevention Resources

Two elementary students

Suicide is the leading cause of death for youth in Colorado. An alarmingly large number of young people report having made serious plans for suicide attempts, and Colorado has one of the highest rates for suicide in the country.

Denver Public Schools is dedicated to serving the Whole Child, including ensuring students have social emotional intelligence and are safe in their schools. Schools work diligently to ensure each community has access to suicide prevention programming and community resources.

As a parent, it’s important to be aware of common warning signs, and when acted upon, can save lives. Take a moment to familiarize yourself with warning signs and remember that suicide is preventable!

What should I do if I have concerns about my child?

It’s important to take all concerns seriously! Listen to your child, and acknowledge how they feel. Let them know you care and seek help from a trained mental health professional.

When risk is imminent, call 911 or transport your child to the nearest emergency room.

If you are worried about another child, you can call 911 or make a Safe2Tell report by calling 1-877-542-7233 or completing the form online.

Teen Message to Parents

Family

What else can I do as a parent?

  • Follow up with referrals provided by emergency services. This could include a referral for counseling or follow up with a primary care physician.
  • Partner with your school’s mental health provider to ensure your child receives the supports needed to feel successful. This can be the school psychologist, social worker, counselor or nurse. Contact information can be found on your school’s webpage.
  • Ask about resources. Schools can often share referral information for free or low cost services in your community.
  • Actively supervise your child. Provide access to structured activities that involve trusted adults to monitor needs and care.
  • Engage in means restriction. If you or anyone in your household owns a gun, knife or other dangerous weapon, place these items in a safe, securable location.
  • Remove any medications that a child could use to overdose.
  • Tell your school’s mental health provider (school psychologist, social worker, counselor or nurse) so that they can work with you to develop a safety plan for your child.
  • Help your child identify trusted adults that he/she can ask for help from. Be sure to identify people at school as well as in the community. Talk to you child about Safe2Tell, and make sure your child knows how to use the various reporting features – online reporting, hotline, and app. You can start by helping your child download the app on a cell phone or visit the webpage together.

Teacher and elementary studentHow does DPS support suicide prevention?

DPS implements annual preventive programming for students:

  • Riding the Waves in our 5th grade classrooms
  • Signs of Suicide in our 6th and 9th grade classrooms
  • Safe2Tell programming in all schools, implementation varies by grade
  • Other programming and social-emotional curricula to foster protective factors and promote positive school culture, implementation varies by grade

DPS also provides annual training for parents and staff and cultivates community partnerships to support student and family access to affordable and relevant mental health services. We also utilize the Suicide Risk Review protocol whenever a student talks about harming himself/herself, or if there is concern that a student has thoughts about hurting himself/herself.

Crisis Support Resources

Safe2Tell Colorado

Safe2Tell Colorado gives YOU a safe, anonymous way to help someone who is struggle or hurting. No one will ask for your name or number. There is no caller ID, no call tracing, no call recording and no call forwarding. Safe2Tell only wants to hear your concern and try to help. To learn more, visit https://safe2tell.org. To make a report, call 1-877-542-7233 from anywhere, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Or download the mobile app:  

Colorado Crisis Services
Call 1-844-493-8255 to connect with a trained crisis counselor or visit one of the walk-in clinics. Most centers are open 24/7 and offer confidential, in-person crisis support, information and referrals to anyone in need. You can also chat online or text “TALK” to 38255.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
The Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress, prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones, and best practices for professionals. You can also chat online.

The Trevor Project
For members of the LGBTQ community, connect with a trained counselor by calling 1-866-488-7386. You can also chat online or text “START” to 678678.

 

Parent Handouts

I am worried About My Child. Where do I Start?

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Talking to Your Kids About Suicide

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5 Common Myths About Suicide Debunked [National Alliance on Mental Illness]

Preventing Youth Suicide: Tips for Parents and Educators

 

 

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Contact Information:

For non-emergency DPS support contact DPS SEO Safety Coordinators at Dr. Jane Lineman @ 303-242-6140.
For emergency support, please contact 911 and the DPS Department of Safety at 720-423-3911