Chapter 4: After a student’s death from suicide

When you are notified

“I couldn’t believe it.  I replayed our last conversation over and over again.  And within minutes I needed to support an entire class of grieving students”. -Teacher

Your colleagues and all school staff should be sensitively informed about a death from suicide as soon as possible. If you have worked directly with the student; had a particularly close relationship with him or her; or have had other experiences with suicide in your personal life, you may face additional challenges and may need additional support.  

If your school has access to a crisis response team, they should be notified as soon as possible so that they can help you and the other staff members respond in a timely, thoughtful, and well-informed manner. If your school board has a protocol for responding to a death from suicide, that should also be accessed as early as possible. Such protocols often outline who else in the school community needs to be informed, such as the superintendent or head of counselling, and how to do so.