Citizens Commission on Human Rights of Florida | OPINION – School courses that teach our kids about suicide and dealing with death do lead to more suicide attempts despite claims to the contrary in The Youth Suicide Prevention School-Based Guide booklet given out widely in Florida.
This booklet, sponsored by SAMHSA (The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) – an agency of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services – glosses over some startling facts.
The booklet states it’s “a Myth” that courses discussing suicide in school classrooms lead to more students thinking about and attempting suicide.
It then goes on to contradict itself by stating “studies found that a limited number of students who had previously attempted suicide and were exposed to a curriculum were more likely to view these programs as unsettling and may see suicide as a possible solution to overwhelming problems.”
These harmful suicide classes “focused on the stress model for suicide, a model that attempts to destigmatize suicide. The stress model for explaining suicide has recently been found to be ineffective and potentially dangerous because it “normalizes” suicidal behavior, making suicide more acceptable.”
So, backpedaling from “stress causes suicide” they now promote “mental illness causes suicide” and proceed to encourage teachers, administrators and peers to inform the school psychologist of anyone who looks like a candidate for mental health treatment, i.e. psychotropic drugs.
A battery of suggested suicide screening tests is offered. The booklet also praises a test called MAPS (Measure of Adolescent Potential for Suicide) and then states that “MAPS has also been found to be an effective way of reducing a student’s suicidality although how MAPS does this is unknown.”
Such questionable tests and classes to teach about suicide have done nothing to curb the rising USA student suicide rates … Read more.
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