What I Thought Was A Normal School Day

Decent Essays

On what I thought was a normal school day in November 2014, a strange silence seemed to overcome the hallways of Franklin High School in Reisterstown, Maryland, broken only by the occasional whispers of my classmates. That day at lunch, I finally discovered what the eeriness was about. Our classmate, Brandon Rivera, had committed suicide overnight. I didn’t know Brandon well, but I overheard from my peers that he had shown some signs of depression. Unfortunately, no one – neither his family, friends, nor teachers – had caught on, and therefore, no one was able to provide Brandon with the help that could have saved his life. Would Brandon still be here today if someone had noticed he was suffering from depression? Would he still be …show more content…

The screening of teenagers in school may be beneficial because teachers are in a good position to pinpoint students who need help. Students of all ages spend upwards of six hours a day at school with their teachers, which, in many cases, is longer than a student may spend with his/her parents on any given weekday. This time in school is spent not only learning, but establishing relationships with their peers and teachers. Because teachers are able to get to know their students by spending so much time with them, it may be easier for a teacher to identify any changes in their personality or notice when a student is in distress. For these reasons, it is significantly more effective to connect teenagers to mental health services based out of their school and provide follow-up treatment services through school psychologists rather than having students and parents do so by themselves out in the community, where they are not guaranteed to go for follow-ups (“…Adolescent Screening”, 2011). According to the National Institute of Mental Health, “3.3% of 13 to 18 year olds have experienced a seriously debilitating depressive disorder” (“Depression”). Screening in schools will allow mental illnesses to be caught early on, which can prevent any related issues, more than just suicide. Untreated mental illnesses can lead to school dropouts, increased drug use and abuse, and violence. If all students are required

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