Weatherford Democrat

Aledo ExtrA

March 11, 2014

Aledo ISD approves suicide prevention program


The Aledo School Board approved the LifeLines Suicide Prevention Program in February, lining up with a recommendation from the Student Health Advisory Council, which has spent a year reviewing choices.

The optional program stems from House Bill 1386, which relates to the “public health threat posed by youth suicide” and the qualifications of those who serve as therapists in public schools. It is associated with House Bill 1942, the anti-bullying bill. Both were approved in 2011.

The SHAC endorsed the prevention portion of LifeLines, Director of Student Services and Safety Scott Kessel said, which offers staff and parent training resources and student-produced DVDs for lessons.

“It does not include a screening tool to assess which students might be at risk for making a suicide attempt,” he told the board, “but staff believes a screening might be too personal, questions might not be answered honestly, and it would require active consent from parents that would be very challenging and highly unlikely to obtain.”

The SHAC did not support the intervention and post-intervention sections, Kessel said, because administrators think the district “has effective processes in place to intervene when suicidal ideation is made and in the event of a tragic student death.”

The curriculum will be implemented through high school credit health courses, taken in eighth grade, ninth grade or on the high school campus.

Trustee Johnny Campbell asked Kessel to sum up the money and time the district has spent on bullying program since the 2011 legislation passed.

Trustee Dr. David Tillman wanted to know if the district monitors students who take antidepressants or undergo psychological therapy, and Kessel said it does so when the information is offered, but has no way of compelling parents to release it.

Tillman suggested a memorandum be sent out requesting the information.

Suicide, bullying and Aledo ISD

In an interview last week Kessel said Aledo ISD has had no suicides in the two-and-one-half years he’s been on staff, although a small number of attempts have been made.

“It’s important for the community to realize that the district doesn’t always know,” he added. “Ninety-nine percent of suicides don’t happen at school.”

He is reluctant to ask about the mental health of students, Kessel said, because many families regard that to be a private matter.

“It would be useful to have that information,” he said, “but I think we need to tread lightly.”

A mental health condition is a risk factor for teen suicide, Kessel said, also pointing to a student’s lack of social connectedness, the absence of family support and the access to guns or large quantities of prescription medication.

“LifeLines has a parent component and a staff component,” he said, “but the main part is about peers — proactive friends — and fostering that. Eighty-five percent of students are bystanders, not bullies or victims.

“It’s not uncommon when kids make an attempt for other kids to have heard them talk about it.”

Text Only
Aledo ExtrA
  • 0725 one arson.JPG Suspicious house fire under investigation

    The Weatherford fire marshal says a fire that damaged a house and killed two puppies Wednesday night is being investigated as a suspicious fire and a suspect is in jail on unrelated charges.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • CPS data.jpg Case overload

    Parker County Attorney John Forrest will ask county commissioners for additional funds as county budget discussions begin this year; he hopes to hire another attorney to help with an increase in Child Protective Services cases.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Richard Adams Sr. Firefighter arrested on child sex assault charges

    A volunteer Hudson Oaks firefighter is in the Parker County Jail on charges he repeatedly sexually assaulted two young relatives over a several year period. 

    Richard Frederick Adams Sr., 62, arrested Monday, faces two charges of continuous sexual abuse of a child under 14, a first-degree felony.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Developer withdraws site plan

    ANNETTA —A controversial 34-home subdivision proposed for a 41-acre tract on Duncan Road will not go forward as planned, according to action taken by both the proposed developer and the Annetta Town Council after a public hearing Thursday night.

    July 22, 2014

  • Aledo City Council to meet July 24

    The Aledo City Council will meet at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 24, in the Aledo Community Center, 104 Robinson Court, Aledo.

    July 22, 2014

  • oak leaf ladder shot.jpg Fires damage business, home

    Two separate fires around 2 p.m. July 15 damaged a Willow Park business and destroyed the home of a Weatherford family.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Letter to the Editor

    Dear Editor,
     Thursday night, July 17, I was present for a surprisingly interesting experience when State Representative candidate Matthew Britt addressed a small group of supporters, followed by a question and answer session.

    July 22, 2014

  • ESD 1, Annetta South close on fire station site

    Parker County Emergency Services District No. 1 and Annetta South officials said Tuesday that the ESD is homing in on a site for a new fire station to serve residents in the Annettas and surrounding areas. Annetta South is expected to consider a zoning change to accommodate a new station next month.

    July 22, 2014

  • Registration has begun for Aledo ISD

    Aledo ISD enrollment for the 2014-15 school year began yesterday, July 21, and students new to the district need to register before school begins, Monday, Aug. 25.

    July 22, 2014

  • County scrambling to fill elections post

    Former Parker County Assistant Elections Administrator Laura Watkins, who sought, but was not appointed to the post of Parker County Elections Administrator after Robert Parten retired, last week began work as assistant elections administrator for Palo Pinto County, Palo Pinto County Elections Administrator Judith Evans has confirmed.

    July 22, 2014

Must Read
House Ads
Top News
AP Video
Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' 'Modern Family' Star on Gay Athletes Coming Out MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase Obama Seeks Limits on US Company Mergers Abroad Large Family to Share NJ Lottery Winnings U.S. Flights to Israel Resume After Ban Lifted Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands