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Week Eleven School Violence and Mental Health

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Week Eleven School Violence and Mental Health Alan Leschied, PhD, C.Psych. How Is It Likely To Be Treated? Medically Use of Anti-depressants SSRI s (i.e. Prozac ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Week Eleven School Violence and Mental Health


1
Week Eleven School Violence and Mental Health
  • Alan Leschied, PhD, C.Psych.

2
  • Inclusion Part I School Violence
  • Being Part of the Solution

3
  • How am I suppose to get an education here when
    my friend is getting stabbed in the cafeteria.
  • Helen S. - Grade 10 student in the Thames Valley
    School Board following a stabbing incident in her
    school, The London Free Press

4
Situating the Extent of Current Youth Violence
  • 22 of all teen-aged students have been in a
    fight in the past year
  • 34 - male 11 female
  • 15 reported the presence of gangs at their
    school
  • 24 reported fearing attack at school
  • 13 of students consciously avoid certain areas
    of the school for fear of attack

5
Situating the Current Extent of Youth Violence
(contd)
  • 35 of students were involved in bullying
    problems more than once a semester
  • 20 had been victims 15 as bully
  • 75 of bullies were boys

6
  • The greatest growth in the rate of violent crime
    is not in areas like homicide, but in minor
    assault. Over a ten year period, this rate
    climbed by 73 from 1968 to 1996

  • (OPSTF, 2008)

7
Gender Differences in Youth Violence
  • Adolescent girls the fastest growing group
    accounting for increase in youth violence
  • (StatsCanada, 2004)
  • Important to be aware of the gender differences
    in the etiology of youth violence

8
Gender Differences in Youth Violence
Direct Physical Aggression predominantly boys consists of shoving, throwing objects, taking things, choking, punching, kicking, beatings and stabbings Indirect Aggression predominantly girls more subtle and likely to be verbal taunting, rumours arguing with others social isolation
9
Relevance of Gender
  • Similarity of victim impact regardless of the
    nature of the violence - physical or relational

10
Nature of Victim Impact
  • Victimization results in
  • further social isolation
  • loss of self esteem, self efficacy
  • promotion of emotional distress (anxiety,
    depression)
  • loss of interest in academic, athletic and social
    achievement

11
But the Cost of Violence is High for Perpetrators
as Well.
  • Lessening aggressors ability to learn how to
    adapt effectively
  • Limiting academic opportunities
  • Establishes a sequence of escalating punishments
    that restrict positive social development

12
Commonly Cited Factors Linked to Youth Violence
  • Lack of appropriate role models
  • Existence of real or perceived racism and sexism
  • Influence of violence in the entertainment
    industry
  • Lack of appropriate school placement for special
    needs students
  • Lack of parental discipline

13
Potential Warning Signs
  • Serious drug or alcohol abuse
  • Gang membership
  • Threatening others regularly
  • Low self regulation (unable to contain anger)
  • Feelings of rejection
  • Having been victimized through bullying
  • Poor school performance
  • Failure to acknowledge the feelings or rights of
    others

14
Imminent Warning Signs
  • Escalating loss of temper on a daily basis
  • Increasing use of alcohol or drugs
  • Increasing risk-taking behaviour
  • Detailing plans to commit acts of violence
  • Announcing threats to harm others
  • Reporting feeling disrespected

15
So What Can Schools Do?The Characteristics of
Safe Schools
  • Focus on academic achievement
  • students who do not receive the support they need
    are less likely to behave in socially desirable
    ways
  • Develop links to the community
  • includes close partnerships with families,
    support services, community police and the
    community at large
  • Involve families in meaningful ways
  • families are supported yin expressing concerns
    and obtaining help they need to address problem

16
  • Treat students with equal respect
  • communicate to students that all are valued and
    address issues of bias and unfair treatment
  • Discuss safety issues openly
  • address issues of risk with weapons, teach
    children about alternatives to violence
  • Emphasize positive relationships among students
    and staff
  • emphasize cooperative learning and reduce social
    isolation

17
  • Offer extended day programs for youth in need
  • can include tutoring, mentoring, cultural arts
    and citizenship programs
  • Referral process for children who report abuse or
    neglect
  • Help children feel safe expressing feelings
  • Create ways for students to share concerns
  • students who voice concerns about safety must be
    protected

18
What Principals Can Do...
  • Establish a zero tolerance toward violence
  • Establish a safe schools committee that includes
    teachers, parents and students
  • Offer anger management training, stress relief to
    teachers an staff
  • Make schools a parent friendly place
  • Facilitate cooperation with community groups

19
What Teachers Can Do...
  • Know your students
  • Know your students parents
  • Recognize warning signs that may be related to
    violence
  • Incorporate discussions on violence in the
    classroom
  • Teach conflict resolution

20
What Students Can Do...
  • Embrace a zero tolerance towards violence
  • Manage your own anger
  • Help others settle conflict peacefully
  • Mentor a younger student
  • Become a peer counsellor
  • Welcome new students to the school and help them
    feel at home

21
What Parents Can Do...
  • Take an active role in your childs school
  • Act as role models
  • Listen and talk to your children regularly
  • Set clear limits for your children in advance
  • Communicate clearly on violence issues
  • Monitor your childs intake of violence from the
    media
  • Insist on knowing your childs friends

22
Current Major Thrusts in Ontario School Violence
Prevention
  • Promote programs that influence school culture
  • Support students to own the problem
  • Establish codes of conduct
  • Change legislation (i.e. Ontarios Safe Schools
    Act)
  • Create and integrate media literacy
  • Integrate curriculum to promote values education
  • Teach relationships

23
Inclusion Part II Promoting Students Social and
Emotional Well-Being
24
Inclusion Part II Promoting Students Social and
Emotional Well-Being
25
So What does Child and Adolescent Mental Health
Refer to?
  • Mental health refers to
  • The state of emotional and social well-being
    wherein an individual realizes her or his own
    abilities
  • An individual can work within normal stresses
    of life
  • An individual can work productively
  • An individual can make a contribution to her or
    his community
  • World Health Organization, 1999

26
More commonly mental health relates to such
intrinsic factors as
  • Emotional Security
  • Self esteem
  • Self efficacy
  • Social competence
  • Autonomy
  • Capacity for problem solving
  • Developing sense of purpose
  • Planful competence
  • Humour

27
Leading Sources of Stress that hold the Potential
to Detract from Social and Emotional Well-Being
28
THE SCOPE
  • No other illnesses affect so many children in
    such a serious and widespread manner.
  • (British Columbia
    Ministry of Children and Family Development)

29
So What do We Know?
  • Rates of mental health disorders increase from
    childhood through adolescence
  • They peak in young adulthood
  • With rates of mental disorders between ages 15-24
    being higher than with any other age group
  • The most common disorders are anxiety and
    depression

30
What is the State of Child and Adolescent Mental
Health in Canada?
  • 15-21 of Ontarios children and adolescents
    have at least one mental health disorder
  • This translates into approximately 467,000 to
    654,000 children and youth in Ontario
  • Consequences include
  • poor academic achievement
  • failure to complete high school
  • substance abuse
  • conflict with the law
  • an inability to live independently or hold a job
  • health problems and suicide
  • Suicide is the second leading cause of death
    among adolescents age 15-19

31
Lets Focus on Depression
  • It is likely the most common mental health
    disorder in a student you are likely to connect
    with?
  • What is it?
  • How is it different from having a Blue Monday ?
  • How is it typically treated?
  • And what can I do?

32
Depression is a Syndrome Not Simply a Symptom
  • It is constituted by factors that include changes
    in
  • How we think Cognitive Domain
  • How we feel - Affective domain
  • What we do Behavioural Domain
  • And how we react physiologically Physiological
    Domain
  • And the length of time during which the symptoms
    are in evidence

33
Affective Behavioural Cognitive
Frequent sadness or crying Feelings of hopelessness and guilt Loss of in interest of things that previously held joy Persistent boredom or low energy Social isolation or difficulty with relationships Increased irritability, anger or hostility Frequent physical illnesses, such as headaches and stomachaches Frequent absences from school or poor performance in school Poor concentration A major change in eating or sleeping patterns Running away from home Loss of self esteem Extreme sensitivity to rejection Thoughts or expressions of suicide or self-destructive behaviour Expression that things are not going to improve
34
How Is It Likely To Be Treated?
  • Medically
  • Psychologically
  • Use of Anti-depressants SSRIs (i.e. Prozac,
    Celexa)
  • Produce chemicals in the brain that increase the
    production of serotonin
  • Not totally understood
  • Does not work equally well with all persons
  • Can create increased risk of suicide in some
    adolescents
  • Psychotherapy (i.e. Cognitive Behavioural
    Therapy)
  • Break the chain of negative thought patterns
  • Interrupt the cycle of catastrophic thinking

35
So why is this important? And why should it fall
to teachers?
  • First school is the one place where all
    children and adolescents are-
  • Second - schools are among the primary
    socializing agents in our culture
  • Third - research tells us there are direct links
    between social and emotional well-being and
    student achievement

36
School factors that place students
emotional and social well-being at risk(Graham,
2007)
  • School Related Factors Influencing Student
  • Mental Health Rating (1-5)

37
Where are the Efforts Going in Taking Mental
Health to School?
38
Lastly..Mental Health is More than the Absence of
Disorder
  • Mental health also includes the gradual
    development of social, emotional, cognitive and
    other competencies
  • It is reflected in a young persons sense of self
    mastery, self esteem, social inclusion and
    capacity to cope with adversity

39
Healthy Milestones and Factors That Encourage
Them(National Research Council, 2009)
Individual Family School and Community
Self regulation Communication and learning Making friends and getting along with people Healthy physical development and habits Intellectual development Psychological and emotional competence (self esteem, mastery, morality, values, social development Healthy and safe physical environment Extended family support and positive parenting Age appropriate structure and limits Opportunities to belong Opportunities for skill building Positive social norms Balance of autonomy and relatedness Self sufficiency and identity exploration School environment that supports positive development (i.e. high teacher / academic expectations, effective classroom management partnerships between school and family Positive social norms Opportunities for exploration in work and school Connectedness to adults outside of the family
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