Teacher quote on suicide prevention training, "I am a teacher and I feel better equipped in my classroom." Virginia School Safety Training Forum

See the topics, takeaways, and pdfs on the pages below.

From one hour to a half day, virtual or in person, Mental Health Awareness Education has suicide prevention training for teachers including preschool, K-12 educators, university professors, administrators, school counselors, school nurses, and government agencies on suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention.

Based on the book, Emotionally Naked, A Teacher’s Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk, suicide prevention training for teachers empowers educators with the tools to reduce this threat to life.

Education includes themes of mental health, substance misuse, and self-harm. This practical training is engaging and includes examples, case studies, and lots of storytelling to help the learning stick.

Suicide prevention training for teachers and other educators does not “teach” them to be therapists

“Thanks to your training I was able to ask a student about suicide today. While I was nervous, it felt strangely empowering!”

—University Faculty Member, Suicide Prevention Training Attendee, NC State University

Instead, it presents ways to identify students who are struggling, how to have the conversation, what to do, and finally how to leverage their relationships positively.

In short, it’s about how to be the bridge from a struggling student to the help they need.

All courses can include a parent education night or a student presentation and can be taught in person or virtually.

For students, the topic focuses on mental health and coping strategies and ways they can prevent suicide for themselves or their friends. The parent programs are here.

comment from social media about a good suicide prevention training for teachers and the book
Suicide Prevention Training for Teachers and Suicide Prevention Book to go with it

Suicide Prevention Training for Teachers and Educators Can Prevent Students From Getting to Crisis

In-person or online suicide prevention training for teachers and educators emphasizes small shifts in the pedagogy and school culture that help students build coping and critical thinking skills. This is an upstream strategy and includes examples and case studies of how other educators have accomplished this and gotten results.

The small systemic culture shifts taught, are not difficult to implement, do not require a formal program, and not only create a foundation for suicide prevention but lead to fewer disciplinary problems, less self-harm, and substance misuse.

Crisis response always uses up more resources and time, and any effort to avoid that is a plus for any school staff.

We also know that emotionally healthy kids perform better which improves your overall school report card. Note that the strategies discussed also include teachers who may be at risk.

“I love hearing the scripts and how to talk to teens with empathy.”
—Melodi Dewey, K-12 Lafayette School District School Psychologist, Lafayette, California


Overview of Educator Training and Speaker Topics (including mental health keynote speaker topics)

suicide prevention topics for educators
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One-Hour Suicide Prevention Training for Teachers and Educators

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Program Title: Spotting Students at Risk: The Educator’s Role in Preventing Suicide and Self-Harm Behaviors (or The Emotionally Naked Truth About Suicide)

Time: 1 hour (can be 1.5 hours)

Virtual or In-Person Professional Development Topic for: Educators including teachers, school counselors, school nurses, principals, coaches, etc.

Learning outcomes:

  • Cryptic and real-life signs of suicide in youth and what to say/do
  • Examples of how other teachers have seamlessly built connection, mindfulness, and coping skills into their classroom culture
  • Lesser-known transitions when students are more at risk
  • Creating a suicide-safe environment (aka. means safety)


Professional Development or short program suicide prevention training for teachers and educators

suicide prevention training for teachers,suicide prevention for teachers
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Time: 2-3 hours. An introductory call is free.

Virtual or In-Person Professional Development Topic for: Educators including teachers, school counselors, school nurses, principals, coaches, etc.

For: Elementary schools, Middle Schools, High Schools, Colleges

Contact Anne Moss Rogers  PD Program title: Spotting Students at Risk: The Educator’s Role in Preventing Suicide and Self-Harm Behaviors

Learning outcomes:

  • The cryptic and often veiled ways students and teachers cry for help (real-life examples)
  • How to respond, and what to say/do (includes actual scripts based on student age)
  • Case studies of how educators have seamlessly built connection, coping skills, and embed SEL competencies into their classroom culture 
  • Lesser-known triggers that put students at greater risk of suicide and what to do
  • Creating a suicide-safe environment
  • If relevant, how to spot & respond to elementary-age children at risk of suicide who don’t have a mature concept of death or know the word “suicide”
  • If relevant, the training can include evidence-based screening tools and gap surveillance tools for educators

Themes include hope, resilience, diversity and inclusion, connection, mental health, coping strategies, SEL, and self-care.


Half-day Suicide Prevention, Intervention, Postvention Training for Educators

suicide prevention training for teachers,suicide prevention for teachers
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Time: 3.5-4 hours (half day) Training, Professional Development, or Preconference Workshop

Example event here at the Virginia School Safety Forum

Topic title: Suicide Prevention, Intervention, and Postvention for Educators

Description: Participants will have the opportunity to learn through scenarios and discussions and strengthen their ability to gain insight, tools, and resources to work through one of the most difficult topics those working with students face–suicide.  This training includes scripts and role play, videos from educators and experts, real case studies, simple strategies, and time for Q&A throughout and will focus on three parts:

Part I – Prevention

  • Signs to look for in young people ages 6-25. What to look for in artwork, on social media sites, and in papers kids write.
  • A review of case studies of how teachers have integrated coping and critical thinking into their curriculum and how that helps kids build resilience and coping skills.
  • Creating a suicide-safe environment

Part II – Intervention

  • What to say, what to do, scripts, and role play on how to respond. (virtual presentation will have talk bubbles)
  • Examples of protocols in school settings.
  • Scripts for effectively and supportively addressing conversations and situations with students in an age-appropriate and sensitive way. (Customized based on the audience and age group.)

Part III- Postvention

  • The top errors most administrators make after a school suicide can put other vulnerable students at risk.
  • How to support staff and students in their grief after the suicide of a teacher or student.
  • What to do and say to the parent of a deceased child and a protocol to follow.
  • What educators can say to students who accuse teachers of holding back or lying when the parent has asked that the cause of death not be disclosed?
  • How to prevent contagion and cohort suicide.
  • Memorial guidelines and creating a commemoration policy.


Testimonials from half-day suicide prevention training for teachers and other educators

More testimonials for mental health speaker Anne Moss Rogers here

Feedback from Educators at a Pre-Conference Mental health workshop, Suicide Prevention, Intervention, Postvention for Educators:

  • “Heartfelt presentation – it will help me to empathize more with troubled kids in schools.”
  • “She speaks from personal experience from the heart. I liked the script practice and scenarios especially. Really good advice for figuring out what to say and how to say it. And also understanding the importance of listening!!!”
  • “When a presenter has the personal experience, as this presenter, it adds an element of authenticity and compassion to what they are conveying.”
  • “The session is a must in today’s young adult and teens involvement.”
  • “Your attention and compassion on this subject was captivating, thank you!”
  • “An excellent dive into this uncomfortable topic”
  • “Excellent training; I learned additional information; the training reinforced my skill sets; and provided me with much more detailed information on how to handle these types of incidents.”
  • “I’ve often worried about the most effective verbiage for children in families in this raw situation. The examples on to say and how to bridge that gap of understanding between me and families to the student was invaluable.”

emotionally naked teachers guide to preventing suicide

Emotionally Naked: A Teacher’s Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk