Stand with us against Bullying
Bullying harms many people in many ways. Billings Public Schools, along with the Montana Office of Public Instruction, stand together to strive to build a safe environment and stop bullying in our schools. Contacting us when there may be an issue is the first step to prevention and support. If you have, or if someone you know has, been bullied or is being bullied, below is a form to begin the process that will allow BPS to begin to investigate the situation. We are here to help.
Only as a community can we identify and support those being bullied, redirect behavior, and change the attitudes of those who tolerate bullying.
Youth Suicide Must Be a Priority
Youth suicide is impacting Montana families, communities, and schools at an alarming rate. It is the second leading cause of death among ages 10-44 in Montana. Last year, there were 14 suicides under the age of 17 in Montana.
Underlying all this is the fact that youth suicide is preventable. Schools are in a position to change these statistics by building a supportive structure that eliminates the stigma surrounding suicide, helps students feel connected to their schools and communities, and gives them support to face and overcome adversity.
Connected Schools Make a Difference
More and more research is showing that students are more likely to engage in healthy behaviors and succeed academically when they feel connected to school. What is school connectedness? It is the belief by students that adults and other peers in the school care about their learning, as well as about them as individuals.
Schools can do two major things right now to encourage student-school connectedness and decrease suicide:
1. Educate, Educate, Educate - school staff, parents & community, AND students
Click HERE for more suicide education 'must-haves', info, and resources
2. A comprehensive program with protocols for addressing underlying mental illness or other issues
Click HERE to learn more about 'whole-school' programs that address suicide prevention
Contacts for More Support
Jamey Petersen, MT OPI, Coordinated School Health Unit Director, 406-444-3000
Access OPI's Suicide Awareness and Prevention page HERE.