Added October 24, 2018
In this manuscript, the authors offer school counselors four types of research-supported suicide prevention programs, as well as a common standard for the development of an effective comprehensive school suicide prevention program using a five-step process, and frames these approaches within the ASCA National Model (2012a). Schools can be ideal places to provide suicide intervention programs for youth. Although no evidence-based packaged program exists to apply across schools, literature does exist regarding types of suicide prevention programs. The literature suggests four different types of suicide prevention programs, including (a) universal curricular suicide education, (b) in-service education for gatekeepers, (c) school-wide suicide screening programs, and (d) enhancing protective factors.
The five steps for building a school prevention program supported by literature include (a) gaining administrative support, (b) determining the content to include in the education and training, (c) decide to whom you are going to deliver your content and how you will deliver your content, (d) choosing the method of intervention, and (e) creating an evaluation plan.
Legal and ethical consideration must also be taken into account, according to the ASCA code of ethics and the state in which the school counselor practices. For example: School counselors provide short-term counseling in a brief context but are ethically obligated to students and their families in finding long-term clinical counseling (ASCA, 2016, A.1.a.). When a school counselor follows the five steps for building a school prevention program, they create a program that overlaps with all four major areas of the ASCA National Model.
Paul F. Granello, PhD, Brett Zyromski, PhD
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