Every Child Safe, Healthy and Connected
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WISH Success
I could not be prouder of the 2012-2013 accomplishments of the Wisconsin Safe & Healthy Schools Center.  We have provided professional development opportunities to 260 school districts and 94 organizations. This year has reminded me that schools and communities, no matter how many pressures of competing initiatives and limited resources continue to prioitize safe and healthy youth. Read EOY Report

Top Safe & Healthy Needs Identified
1. Crisis Planning 75%

2. Cyberbullying 70%
3. Emerging Drug Trends 64%
4. Relational Bullying 61%
5. Brief Interventions 61%

You spoke, we listened.  Click here to read a summary of our 2013 survey results.  Thanks for your participation.  This is what we used to plan 2013-2014 events.
The Faces of WI
Safe and Healthy Schools Center

DIRECTOR: Tracy Herlitzke
Phone: 608-786-4838

NORTH (CESAs #5, #9, #12)
Coordinator: Lynn Verage
Phone: 715-453-2141

WEST (CESAs #4, #10, #11)
Coordinator: Carol Zabel
Phone: 715-720-2145

CENTRAL (CESAs #2, #3, #6)
Coordinator: Jackie Schoening
Phone: 920-236-0515

EAST (CESAs #1, #7, #8)
Coordinator: Christine Kleiman
Phone: 920-465-2139
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August 2013

Safe and Healthy Updates
Welcome Back!


We hope you had a safe and healthy summer!  As you come back to another year, we hope you find the time and resources you need to continue to make a difference in our communities and with children.  Looking forward to another great year!


WI Safe & Healthy School Staff

Are you PREPaRED?

Submitted by Carol Zabel, Western Regional Coordinator


PREPaRE provides school-based mental health professionals and other educational professionals training on how to best fill the roles and responsibilities generated by their participation on school safety and crisis teams.

The PREPaRE curriculum has been developed by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) as part of NASP's decade-long leadership in providing evidence-based resources and consultation related to school crisis prevention and response.  PREPaRE training is ideal for schools committed to improving and strengthening their school safety and crisis management plans and emergency response.

PREPaRE trainings can be scheduled by any sponsoring organization, school, district, etc. Sponsoring simply means that you are hosting and organizing the training. The WSHS Center has two staff trained to provide this training. Consider contacting the Center to schedule training at www.wishschools.org

All individuals who receive PREPaRE training will gain a better understanding of the organization and function of a comprehensive safety and crisis team (Workshop 1/1 day) and/or the knowledge and skills necessary to meet the mental health needs of students and staff in the aftermath of a crisis (Workshop 2/ 2 days).

Bullying and Suicide:

Is there a connection?

Submitted by Jackie Schoening, Central Regional Coordinator


There is a complex relationship between bullying and the risk of suicidal ideation/behavior.  Bullying and peer victimization can put adolescents at increased risk of suicidal ideation and behavior especially when other mental health issues are present.  There is no conclusive evidence that bullying causes suicide due to the fact that suicidal ideation and behavior is usually not attributed to just one event or factor.  It is not the bullying per se; there are important mediating variables involved. 


The media has a tendency to sensationalize suicide when the victim has also been bullied.  The headlines have been filled with stories about teens that were bullied and took their own lives. Clearly, there is a link between bullying and suicide. But is it as simple as - bullying causes kids to commit suicide?


Most mental health experts would argue that claiming bullying is the only cause of suicide is much too simplistic. Bullying aggravates depression and increases suicide risk and the seriousness of the issue shouldn't be minimized. But, failing to look at the other contributing factors related to suicide is a mistake. Suicide is complex issue that also is impacted by depression, feelings of hopelessness, lack of self-esteem, family-life issues and more.


Still, because bullying can be a catalyst for suicide, its significance should not be overlooked. When kids who are already at risk for suicide due to depression or other mental health issues are bullied, the results can be disastrous. Even relatively well-adjusted kids that are bullied can become depressed and contemplate suicide. So the possibility of suicide must be considered when a child is bullied.


Students involved in frequent bullying behavior - both the bully and the victim - should be screened for suicidal ideation/behaviors.  In any prevention effort, it is important that students understand that there is always hope to stop the situation and they should be taught the skills to end the bullying or cyberbullying.The main target of effective prevention of youth suicides is the reduction of suicide risk factors, When adaptive coping skills and hope for change are not presented, students may feel powerless and hopeless, which increases their risk of suicide.

Wisconsin Safe & Healthy Schools Center | 608-786-4838 | therlitzke@cesa4.k12.wi.us | http://www.wishschools.org
923 East Garland Street
West Salem, WI 54669

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