Teaching Coping and Problem-Solving Skills

I asked Jayson Lobley, a Coordinator in Brevard Public Schools’ Student Services, Exceptional Student Education and Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support, to please explain the connection between teaching students coping and problem-solving skills and reducing teen suicides/suicide ideation. The following is what Lobley shared:

Suicide has become a concern amongst teens and adults, both locally and nationally. It seems to present a public health crisis that needs a multi-faceted approach focusing on the individual, relationships, family dynamics, community, and society at large and across all sectors, private and public (Stone, et. al. 2017). One part of this multi-faceted approach to suicide prevention is through teaching coping and problem solving skills.

The Center for Disease Control’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Violence Prevention (2017) suggests that teaching and providing youth with the skills to tackle every day challenges and stressors is an important developmental component to suicide prevention. The use of social-emotional learning programs can help develop and strengthen skills of communication and problem solving, emotional regulation, conflict resolution, help seeking and coping skills.

Brevard Public Schools recognized the issue of suicide and sprang to action. Via the strategic plan, many schools are investing into social-emotional learning curricula to teach coping and problem solving skills to students. While there is not a one size fits all methodology to suicide prevention and mental health, Brevard’s schools are working to develop a comprehensive approach that involves awareness through starting the conversation, implementation of universal prevention strategies, education through evidence-based curricula, and response and recovery methods.

Suicide prevention resources are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Resources include:

  • The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
  • Text “Start” to 741-741
  • Dial 2-1-1

Submitted on June 21 by Renee’ Ruffin-Price to Al Día Today for July 2018