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School Division Policies Related to Suicide Prevention and Response

April 28, 2023 |

A research brief cover focused on suicide prevention in schools

Suicide is one of the leading causes of death among youth age 10-19, and is an increasing concern in the wake of COVID-19. K-12 schools are crucial spaces for offering mental health support to students, and can implement policies to help prevent suicidal thoughts and behaviors. This MERC research and policy brief focuses on education policy related to suicide prevention and response. It is structured to answer the following questions:

1) What are recent trends in youth suicide?
2) What does research show about school division policies that are effective in suicide prevention and response?
3) What policies in Virginia and the MERC region guide the prevention of suicide in school divisions?
4) What are the key takeaways and recommendations for preventing youth suicide through education policy?