Earlier this year, the Government produced guidelines on well-being in second-level schools.
Among the guidelines are that schools:
* Allow students to enhance their coping, communication, and conflict-resolution skills with well planned social, personal, and health education and relationships and sexuality education programmes.
* Encourage students to take part in extra-curricular activities.
* Have systems to support early identification of learning, social, emotional, or behavioural difficulties.
Where concerns emerge about a person's welfare, staff should:
* Listen and talk to the young person.
* Liaise with school management and relevant staff.
* Consult with parents and share detailed information about issues of concern.
Where a young person has concerns beyond the school's capacity to provide support, it should:
* Refer directly to an external service if it already has its own guidelines for such cases.
* Or, with parental consent, refer the young person to a local GP, for initial assessment and advice.
If there is concern in relation to suicide:
* Trusted staff should ask questions to allow the person talk about his or her feelings.
* An emergency referral to GP may be necessary.
* Parents/guardians should be contacted immediately.
For more information: l Hear Me See Me: Hearmeseeme.ie l Gaiety School of Acting Breathe Programme: gaietyschool.com/breathe l Headstrong: Headstrong.ie