Suicide Prevention

  • Suicide Awareness and Prevention (OGUSD Support Staff)

    • Kara Andersen, Counselor, Willowside Middle School, (707) 542-3322, 
    • Jennifer Dominguez, Dean of Students, Willowside Middle School, (707) 542-3322, 
    • Julia Glanz, Counselor, Oak Grove Elementary, (707) 823-5225,   
    • Linsey Gannon, Principal, Willowside Middle School, (707) 542-3322,
    • Jennifer Magnesi, School Psychologist, Oak Grove Union School District, (707) 545-0171,
    • Brett Page, Principal, Willowside Middle School, (707) 542-3322,
    • Erin Ryan, Principal, Oak Grove Elementary, (707) 823-5225,
    • Amber Stringfellow, Superintendent, (707) 545-0171,

    In Crisis? 
    If the situation is life threatening, call 911 and ask for immediate support.

    National Alliance on Mental Illness 

    Sonoma County Crisis Resources:
    Crisis Stabilization Unit (24/7)
    2225 Challenger Way, Santa Rosa

    North Bay Suicide Prevention Hotline (24/7)

    Sonoma County Behavioral Health Access Line (24/7)

    Additional Resources
    Suicide Prevention Lifeline
    TTY: 1-800-799-4889
    24-hour, toll-free, confidential suicide prevention hotline available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. Your call is routed to the nearest crisis center in a national network of more than 150 crisis centers.

    National Helpline
    TTY: 1-800-487-4889
    find-help/national helpline
    Provides 24-hour free and confidential treatment referral and information about mental and/or substance use disorders, prevention and recovery in English and Spanish.

    Disaster Distress Helpline
    Regional center offering crisis counselors trained to listen and offer support to people in emotional crisis.

    Veteran’s Crisis Line
    1-800-273-8255, or text 838255
    TTY: 1-800-799-4889
    Connects veterans in crisis (and their families and friends) with qualified, caring responders through a confidential, toll-free hotline, online chat or text.

    Teen Line
    Text Teen to 839863
    Crisis and referral services, specializing in family reunification of runaways and homeless adolescents ages 11-17. Bilingual.

    National Hopeline Helpline
    Provides counseling and support to those who are suicidal and for suicide survivor loss families.

    Safe Call Now (for First Responders)
    24/7 help line staffed by first responders for first responders and their family members. Can assist with treatment options for responders suffering from mental health, substance abuse and other personal issues. 

    Sonoma & Napa County Al-Anon/Alateen
    707-575-6750 Sonoma County
    707-258-3690 Napa County
    24-Hour Support Lines for people worried about or affected by someone with a drinking problem.

    Alcohol and Drug Abuse Helpline

    Alcohol Treatment Referral Hotline

    Families Anonymous

    National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence Hopeline

    Poison Control

    National Institute on Drug Abuse Hotline
    (800) 662-4357

    Cocaine Anonymous
    (800) 347-8998

    National Help Line for Substance Abuse
    (800) 262-2463

    Opioid Treatment Programs in California
    SAMHSA Treatment Programs in California

    Buprenorphine Treatment Practitioner Locator – Sonoma County
    Sonoma County locator

    National Domestic Violence Hotline
    (800) 799-7233

    National US Child Abuse Hotline
    (800) 422-4453

    Social Media Bullying with References to the following Possible Forums for Social Media Bullying:

    School Bullying: Apps and Websites that Fight Back

    Websites Offering Comment Forums or Sections

    Websites Offering Image or Video Platforms

    Assembly Bill AB 1767 requires any school district, county office of education, or charter school that serves students in kindergarten and grades 1 to 6 to adopt or update a policy on suicide prevention to apply to kindergarten and grades 1 to 6, and specifically address the needs of high-risk groups within those grades (Ed. Code §215).

    Assembly Bill AB 34 requires any school district, county office of education, or charter school, regardless of grades served, to post specific information in a prominent location on the local educational agency’s (LEA’s) existing website in a manner that is easily accessible to parents/guardians and students.

    Parents, educators, mental health professionals, and legislators are making a concerted effort to address the critical need to prevent youth suicides in California.

    Assembly Bill 2246 (O’Donnell) addressed this issue by requiring school district's to adopt suicide prevention policies.  The policy shall specifically address the needs of high-risk groups, include consideration of suicide awareness and prevention training for teachers, and ensure that a school employee acts only within the authorization and scope of the employee’s credential or license.

    Suicide is now the second leading cause of death for youth ages thirteen to eighteen and also is a leading cause of death among ten- to-twelve-year olds. Students in earlier grades also are known to consider, attempt, and die by suicide. Research demonstrates that ideation may start as early as pre-school (however, suicide deaths are very rare among children age nine years or younger).

    The board policy must be developed in consultation with school and community stakeholders, school-employed mental health professionals, and suicide prevention experts. At a minimum, the board policy must address procedures relating to suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention.

    Fact Sheets on Suicide: Adolescents and Young Adults
    The National Adolescent Health Information Center, University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine, highlights some important research results on suicide. It provides information about the age adolescents are most likely to commit suicide, how gender and race impact adolescents in regard to suicide, and examines the suicide rate trends for adolescents. This Suicide Fact Sheet was published in 2006 and is based on the most current data available.

    American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP)
    The AFSP is the leading national not-for-profit organization exclusively dedicated to understanding and preventing suicide through research, education and advocacy, and to reaching out to people with mental disorders and those impacted by suicide. If you are in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741.

    Know the Signs
    Know the Signs is a statewide suicide prevention social marketing campaign built on three key messages: Know the Signs. Find the Words. Reach Out. This campaign is intended to educate Californians on how to recognize the warning signs of suicide, how to find the words to have a direct conversation with someone in crisis and where to find professional help and resources.

    The Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide
    This resource provides practical information about youth suicide prevention that is relevant to schools, parents, and students. This national, nonprofit organization increases awareness about both the problem of youth suicide and increases accessibility to user-friendly resources available to prevent it.

    Walk in Our Shoes
    This campaign utilizes real stories from teens and young adults to teach youth about mental health challenges and mental wellness. The multifaceted campaign uses positive, authentic, and appropriate stories told through an interactive website, school-based theatrical performance, and a statewide public education campaign.

    Oak Grove Union School District Board Policy:
    BP 5141.52 & AR 5141.52
    The Board of Trustees recognizes that suicide is a major cause of death among youth and should be taken seriously. In order to attempt to reduce suicidal behavior and its impact on students and families, the Superintendent or designee shall develop preventive strategies and intervention procedures. The Superintendent or designee may involve school health professionals, school counselors, administrators, other staff, parents/guardians, students, local health agencies and professionals, and community organizations in planning, implementing, and evaluating the district's strategies for suicide prevention and intervention.
    (cf. 1020 - Youth Services)
    (cf. 1220 - Citizen Advisory Committees)
    (cf. 1400 - Relations Between Other Governmental Agencies and the Schools)

    Prevention and Instruction
    Suicide prevention strategies may include, but not be limited to, efforts to promote a positive school climate that enhances students' feelings of connectedness with the school and is characterized by caring staff and harmonious interrelationships among students. (cf. 5131 - Conduct)
    (cf. 5137 - Positive School Climate)
    (cf. 5145.3 - Nondiscrimination/Harassment)
    (cf. 5145.7 - Sexual Harassment)
    (cf. 5145.9 - Hate-Motivated Behavior)
    The district's comprehensive health education program shall promote the healthy mental, emotional, and social development of students including, but not limited to, the development of problem-solving skills, coping skills, and self-esteem. Suicide prevention instruction shall be incorporated into the health education curriculum in the secondary grades. Such instruction shall be aligned with state content standards and shall be designed to help students analyze signs of depression and self-destructive behaviors, including potential suicide, and to identify suicide prevention strategies.(cf. 6142.8 - Comprehensive Health Education)
    The Superintendent or designee may offer parents/guardians education or information which describes the severity of the youth suicide problem, the district's suicide prevention curriculum, risk factors and warning signs of suicide, basic steps for helping suicidal youth, and/or school and community resources that can help youth in crisis.

    Whenever a staff member suspects or has knowledge of a student's suicidal intentions, he/she shall promptly notify the Superintendent or school counselor. The Superintendent or counselor shall then notify the student's parents/guardians as soon as possible and may refer the student to mental health resources in the school or community.
    (cf. 5141 - Health Care and Emergencies)
    Students shall be encouraged to notify the Superintendent or a teacher, counselor, or other adult when they are experiencing thoughts of suicide or when they suspect or have knowledge of another student's suicidal intentions. Whenever the school establishes a peer counseling system to provide support for students, peer counselors shall complete the suicide prevention curriculum, including identification of the warning signs of suicidal behavior and referral of a suicidal student to appropriate adults.
    (cf. 5138 - Conflict Resolution/Peer Mediation)
    The Superintendent or designee shall establish crisis intervention procedures to ensure student safety and appropriate communications in the event that a suicide occurs or an attempt is made on campus or at a school-sponsored activity.

Anti Harassment and Discrimination

  • BP 5145.3 & AR 5145.3 Nondisciminiation and Harassment 
    The Board of Trustees desires to provide a safe school environment that allows all students equal access and opportunities in the district's academic and other educational support programs, services, and activities. The Board prohibits, at any district activity, unlawful discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, intimidation, and bullying of any student based on the student's actual or perceived race, color, ancestry, national origin, nationality, ethnicity, ethnic group identification, age, religion, marital or parental status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, or gender expression or association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics.

    This policy shall apply to all acts related to school activity or to school attendance occurring within the district school. (Education Code 234.1)
    (cf. 0410 - Nondiscrimination in District Programs and Activities)
    (cf. 5131 - Conduct)
    (cf. 5131.2 - Bullying)
    (cf. 5137 - Positive School Climate)
    (cf. 5145.9 - Hate-Motivated Behavior)
    (cf. 5146 - Married/Pregnant/Parenting Students)
    (cf. 6164.6 - Identification and Education Under Section 504)

    Unlawful discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, intimidation, or bullying, includes physical, verbal, nonverbal, or written conduct based on any of the categories listed above. Unlawful discrimination also shall include the creation of a hostile environment when the prohibited conduct is so severe, persistent, or pervasive that it affects a student's ability to participate in or benefit from an educational program or activity; creates an intimidating, threatening, hostile, or offensive educational environment; has the effect of substantially or unreasonably interfering with a student's academic performance; or otherwise adversely affects a student's educational opportunities. 

    Unlawful discrimination also includes disparate treatment of students based on one of the categories above with respect to the provision of opportunities to participate in school programs or activities or the provision or receipt of educational benefits or services.

    The Board also prohibits any form of retaliation against any individual who files or otherwise participates in the filing or investigation of a complaint or report regarding an incident of discrimination. Retaliation complaints shall be investigated and resolved in the same manner as a discrimination complaint. 

    The Superintendent or designee shall facilitate students' access to the educational program by publicizing the district's nondiscrimination policy and related complaint procedures to students, parents/guardians, and employees. He/she shall provide training and information on the scope and use of the policy and complaint procedures and take other measures designed to increase the school community's understanding of the requirements of law related to discrimination. The Superintendent or designee shall regularly review the implementation of the district's nondiscrimination policies and practices and, as necessary, shall take action to remove any identified barrier to student access to or participation in the educational program. He/she shall report his/her findings and recommendations to the Board after each review.
    (cf. 1312.3 - Uniform Complaint Procedures)
    (cf. 1330 - Use of Facilities)
    (cf. 4131 - Staff Development)
    (cf. 4231 - Staff Development)
    (cf. 4331 - Staff Development)
    (cf. 6145 - Extracurricular and Cocurricular Activities)
    (cf. 6145.2 - Athletic Competition)
    (cf. 6164.2 - Guidance/Counseling Services)

    Students who engage in unlawful discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, intimidation, retaliation, or bullying, in violation of law, Board policy, or administrative regulation shall be subject to appropriate consequence or discipline, which may include suspension or expulsion for behavior that is severe or pervasive as defined in Education Code 48900.4. Any employee who permits or engages in prohibited discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, intimidation, retaliation, or bullying, shall be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal.(cf. 4118 - Suspension/Disciplinary Action)
    (cf. 4119.21/4219.21/4319.21 - Professional Standards)
    (cf. 4218 - Dismissal/Suspension/Disciplinary Action)
    (cf. 5144 - Discipline)
    (cf. 5144.1 - Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process)
    (cf. 5144.2 - Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process (Students with Disabilities))
    (cf. 5145.2 - Freedom of Speech/Expression)

    For additional information please visit the California Department of Education

  • BP 4119.11 & AR 4119.11 Sexual Harassment
    The Board of Trustees is committed to providing a safe work environment that is free of harassment and intimidation. The Board prohibits sexual harassment against district employees and retaliatory behavior or action against any person who complains, testifies, or otherwise participates in the complaint process established for the purpose of this policy.
    Sexual harassment includes, but is not limited to, harassment that is based on the gender, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation of the victim.

    This policy shall apply to all district employees and to other persons on district property or with some employment relationship with the district, such as interns, volunteers, contractors, and job applicants.
    (cf. 0410 - Nondiscrimination in District Programs and Activities)
    (cf. 4030 - Nondiscrimination in Employment) 

    Any district employee who engages or participates in sexual harassment or who aids, abets, incites, compels, or coerces another to commit sexual harassment in violation of this policy is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal.
    (cf. 4117.7/4317.7 - Employment Status Reports)
    (cf. 4118 - Dismissal/Suspension/Disciplinary Action)
    (cf. 4218 - Dismissal/Suspension/Disciplinary Action)

    The Superintendent or designee shall take all actions necessary to ensure the prevention, investigation, and correction of sexual harassment, including but not limited to:
    1. Providing training to employees in accordance with law and administrative regulation
    2. Publicizing and disseminating the district's sexual harassment policy to employees and others to whom the policy may apply
    (cf. 4112.9/4212.9/4312.9 - Employee Notifications)
    3. Ensuring prompt, thorough, and fair investigation of complaints
    4. Taking timely and appropriate corrective/remedial action(s), which may require interim separation of the complainant and the alleged harasser and subsequent monitoring of developments

    The Superintendent or designee shall periodically evaluate the effectiveness of the district's strategies to prevent and address harassment. Such evaluation may involve conducting regular anonymous employee surveys to assess whether harassment is occurring or is perceived to be tolerated, partnering with researchers or other agencies with the needed expertise to evaluate the district's prevention strategies, and using any other effective tool for receiving feedback on systems and/or processes. As necessary, changes shall be made to the harassment policy, complaint procedures, or training.

    Sexual Harassment Reports and Complaints

    Any district employee who feels that he/she has been sexually harassed in the performance of his/her district responsibilities or who has knowledge of any incident of sexual harassment by or against another employee shall immediately report the incident to his/her direct supervisor, another supervisor, the district's coordinator for nondiscrimination, the Superintendent, or, if available, a complaint hotline or an ombudsman. A supervisor or administrator who receives a harassment complaint shall promptly notify the coordinator.
    Complaints of sexual harassment shall be filed and investigated in accordance with the complaint procedure specified in AR 4030 - Nondiscrimination in Employment. An employee may bypass his/her supervisor in filing a complaint where the supervisor is the subject of the complaint. All complaints and allegations of sexual harassment shall be kept confidential to the extent necessary to carry out the investigation or to take other subsequent necessary actions. (2 CCR 11023)

Hate-Motivated Behavior

  • BP 5145.9 Hate-Motivated Behavior
    In order to create a safe learning environment for all students, the Board of Trustees desires to protect the right of every student to be free from hate-motivated behavior and will promote harmonious relationships among students so as to enable them to gain a true understanding of the civil rights and social responsibilities of people in society. The district prohibits discriminatory behavior or statements that degrade an individual on the basis of his/her actual or perceived race, ethnicity, culture, heritage, gender, sex, sexual orientation, physical/mental attributes, or religious beliefs or practices.

    (cf. 0410 - Nondiscrimination in District Programs and Activities)
    (cf. 0450 - Comprehensive Safety Plan)
    (cf. 3515.4 - Recovery for Property Loss or Damage)
    (cf. 5131.5 - Vandalism and Graffiti)
    (cf. 5136 - Gangs)
    (cf. 5137 - Positive School Climate)
    (cf. 5141.52 - Suicide Prevention)
    (cf. 5145.3 - Nondiscrimination/Harassment)
    (cf. 5147 - Dropout Prevention) 

    The district shall provide age-appropriate instruction to help promote an understanding of and respect for human rights, diversity, and tolerance in a multicultural society and to provide strategies to manage conflicts constructively.
    (cf. 5138 - Conflict Resolution/Peer Mediation)
    (cf. 6142.3 - Civic Education)
    (cf. 6142.4 - Service Learning/Community Service Classes)
    (cf. 6141.94 - History-Social Science Instruction) 

    The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that staff receive training on recognizing hate-motivated behavior and on strategies to help respond appropriately to such behavior.
    (cf. 4131 - Staff Development)
    (cf. 4231 - Staff Development)
    (cf. 4331 - Staff Development) 

    Grievance Procedures
    Any student who believes he/she is a victim of hate-motivated behavior shall immediately contact the Coordinator for Nondiscrimination/Superintendent. Upon receiving such a complaint, the Coordinator/Superintendent shall immediately investigate the complaint in accordance with school-level complaint process/grievance procedures as described in AR 5145.7 - Sexual Harassment. A student who has been found to have demonstrated hate-motivated behavior shall be subject to discipline in accordance with law, Board policy, and administrative regulation.

    (cf. 1312.1 - Complaints Concerning District Employees)
    (cf. 1312.3 - Uniform Complaint Procedures)
    (cf. 5131- Conduct)
    cf. 5144 - Discipline)
    (cf. 5144.1 - Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process)
    (cf. 5144.2 - Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process (Students with Disabilities))
    (cf. 5145.7 - Sexual Harassment)

    Staff who receive notice of hate-motivated behavior or personally observe such behavior shall notify the Coordinator/Superintendent and/or law enforcement, as appropriate.
    (cf. 3515.3 - District Police/Security Department)
    (cf. 4158/4258/4358 - Employee Security)

    As necessary, the district shall provide counseling, guidance, and support to students who are victims of hate-motivated behavior and to students who exhibit such behavior.
    (cf. 6164.2 - Guidance/Counseling Services)

    For more information you can also visit the California Department of Education


  • BP 5131.2 & AR 5131.2 Bullying
    The Board of Trustees recognizes the harmful effects of bullying on student well-being, student learning, and school attendance and desires to provide a safe school environment that protects students from physical and emotional harm. No individual or group shall, through physical, written, verbal, visual, or other means, harass, sexually harass, threaten, intimidate, cyberbully, cause bodily injury to, or commit hate violence against any student or school personnel, or retaliate against them for filing a complaint or participating in the complaint resolution process.

    (cf. 5131 - Conduct)
    (cf. 5136 - Gangs)
    (cf. 5145.3 - Nondiscrimination/Harassment)
    (cf. 5145.7 - Sexual Harassment)
    (cf. 5145.9 - Hate-Motivated Behavior)

    The Superintendent or designee shall develop strategies for addressing bullying in district schools with the involvement of students, parents/guardians, and staff. As appropriate, the Superintendent or designee may also collaborate with social services, mental health services, law enforcement, courts, and other agencies and community organizations in the development and implementation of effective strategies to promote safety in schools and the community.
    (cf. 1220 - Citizen Advisory Committees)
    (cf. 1400 - Relations Between Other Governmental Agencies and the Schools)
    (cf. 6020 - Parent Involvement)

     Such strategies shall be incorporated into the comprehensive safety plan and, to the extent possible, into the local control and accountability plan and other applicable district and school plans.
    (cf. 0420 - School Plans/Site Councils)
    (cf. 0450 - Comprehensive Safety Plan)
    (cf. 0460 - Local Control and Accountability Plan) 

    Any complaint of bullying shall be investigated and, if determined to be discriminatory, resolved in accordance with law and the district's uniform complaint procedures specified in AR 1312.3. If, during the investigation, it is determined that a complaint is about nondiscriminatory bullying, the principal or designee shall inform the complainant and shall take all necessary actions to resolve the complaint.
    (cf. 1312.3 - Uniform Complaint Procedures)

    If the Superintendent or designee believes it is in the best interest of a student who has been the victim of an act of bullying, as defined in Education Code 48900, the Superintendent or designee shall advise the student's parents/guardians that the student may transfer to another school. If the parents/guardians of a student who has been the victim of an act of bullying requests a transfer for the student pursuant to Education Code 46600, the Superintendent or designee shall allow the transfer in accordance with law and district policy on intradistrict or interdistrict transfer, as applicable.

    (cf. 5116.1 - Intradistrict Open Enrollment)
    (cf. 5117 - Interdistrict Attendance)

    Any employee who permits or engages in bullying or retaliation related to bullying shall be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal.
    (cf. 4118 - Dismissal/Suspension/Disciplinary Action)
    (cf. 4119.21/4219.21/4319.21 - Professional Standards)
    (cf. 4218 - Dismissal/Suspension/Disciplinary Action)

Non-Discrimination Statement

    The Oak Grove Union School District Board of Education is committed to equal opportunity for all individuals in district programs and activities. District programs, activities and services shall be free from unlawful discrimination, harassment, intimidation, and/or bullying based on actual or perceived characteristics of race or ethnicity, color, ancestry, nationality, national origin, immigration status, ethnic group identification, age, religion, marital or parental status, pregnancy, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, or genetic information, or on the basis of a person's association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics.