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Suicide Prevention Training for Schools Listed in the SPRC Best Practices Registry for Suicide Prevention

Needham, MA, November 30, 2015 – Riverside Trauma Center’s Suicide Prevention: A Gatekeeper Training for School Personnel has been listed in Section III of the SPRC Best Practices Registry for Suicide Prevention (BPR). This suicide prevention training for schools is designed to meet the criteria of Massachusetts Law Chapter 284, a bill to Reduce Gun Violence, which encourages all licensed school personnel to receive a minimum of two hours training on suicide prevention every three years.

This two-hour training is relevant for elementary through high school teachers, administrators, and support staff. It is designed to increase knowledge about suicide and crisis issues in youth, including warning signs and risk and protective factors; improve the skills and confidence of teachers and other school staff to ask youth directly about suicide; understand effective school protocols for managing youth at risk; familiarize school personnel with ways to reduce stigma and improve school climate; and teach them how to find “best practices” resources for suicide prevention.

Practices listed in Section III of the BPR address specific objectives of the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention and their content has been reviewed by a panel of suicide prevention experts for accuracy, safety, and adherence to prevention program guidelines. The training is based on current best practices and reflects the training objectives in the 2012 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention.

Riverside Trauma Center’s highly-trained, licensed mental health professionals have over 100 years of combined clinical experience with trauma, suicide survivors, and suicide prevention. This suicide prevention program for schools uses multiple teaching methods, including lecture with PowerPoint, group discussion, videos, and short role play, which help attendees understand and retain the information.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide is the second leading cause of death for ages 10-24. In one study, about 40 percent of youth who reported making a suicide attempt by age 18, made a first attempt during elementary or middle school.* In the fight against suicide, it is important for school personnel to receive the best training possible in suicide prevention.

You can find a fact sheet describing this suicide prevention program for schools posted in Section III of the Best Practices Registry, located on SPRC’s website ( For additional information about the training, visit our website ( or contact Jenny Huynh at 781-433-0672, ext. 5738 or

*James J. Mazza, PhD, Richard F. Catalano, PhD, Robert D. Abbott, PhD, and Kevin P. Haggerty, MSW, (November 2011). “An Examination of the Validity of Retrospective Measures of Suicide Attempts in Youth,” Journal of Adolescent Health.

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