Mental health struggles can change with the seasons. Research consistently finds higher levels of suicide attempts and ideation in the spring, and for youth, there’s also a peak in the fall.¹⁻²This means schools have a direct line to students when they may need them the most.
This fall, with pandemic impacts continuing to exacerbate existing mental health struggles, the opportunity is just as great.
Before the pandemic, there was a growing need among students for mental health support. Suicide was the second-most leading cause of death for youth aged 10-24 — and that’s just one marker across the wide spectrum of mental health struggles. With the pandemic magnifying isolation and anxiety over the last year, those struggles have increased.
To help you and your educators support your students, GoGuardian created this mental health guide in collaboration with school counselors, mental health advocates, and experts in suicidology. Originally released this summer, the guide has been updated for the fall with information about the seasonality of suicide, in addition to resources about social emotional learning, crisis support for students, and universal care for educators.
September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, and there’s never been a better time to ensure students and educators have access to the resources they need to discuss suicide prevention and to seek help. This guide is just a starting point, but we hope it helps you and your school staff chart a path for supporting students when they may need it most.