13 Reasons Why - Parents PLEASE Read

Dear ABC Community,
 
The first priority of ABC Unified School District is to provide a safe, supportive, and inclusive learning environment for all students. For this reason, we believe it is necessary to address season two of 13 Reasons Why, now available for viewing on Netflix. The show is based on a book of the same title; the series takes place after the suicide of high school student Hannah Baker. The second season begins approximately 5 months after Hannah’s death as the school and community try to understand, recover, and move on from the tragedy.13 Reasons Why has graphic portrayals of issues that may affect today’s youth such as bullying & cyberbullying, substance abuse, sexual assault, suicide, violence, and weapons. These difficult topics may be alarming or triggering to viewers, but they also provide an opportunity for adults to engage youth in meaningful and supportive discussions.
 
We encourage caregivers to talk with your child(ren) about 13 Reasons Why. We do not recommend that youth watch this series due to the sensitive nature of its content. Children and teens who are especially at-risk (such as those who feel isolated, are struggling with mental illness, or have any degree of past/current suicidal ideation) should be advised against watching the series. Netflix has a parental control feature to limit access to the show. Should you permit your child to watch the show, we recommend that this be done with the company, guidance, and support of a trustworthy and caring adult.
 
ABC makes the following recommendations, adapted from the National Association of School Psychologists:
Ask your child if he/she has seen or heard of 13 Reasons Why. If you allow your child to watch the show, we recommend that a trustworthy and caring adult be present to view the series and provide guidance.
Be willing and prepared to have honest, serious conversations about these issues with your child(ren) including their thoughts/feelings, and how they think adults can help. See the attached discussion guide* and resources.
 
Listen to your child’s comments without judgement and try put your own agenda aside. Doing so requires that you fully concentrate, understand, respond, and remember what he/she says.
If you are concerned for the safety of your child or one of his/her peers, get help from a community or school-based mental health professional.
 
Remind your child that suicide is never a solution. See the attached resources* regarding youth suicide awareness and prevention.
 
If you want to learn how to support youth in crisis, ABC USD is offering a free 8-hour Youth Mental Health First Aid training on June 14, 2018 from 8:00-4:00 at the District Office. This workshop is designed to teach parents, caregivers, teachers, school staff, and other caring adults how to help youth experiencing a mental health or substance abuse crisis. To sign-up for this training, contact ABC’s Safe Schools department at (562)926-5566 Ext. 21154.
 
ABC Unified School District has school-based mental health professionals available on all campuses; these staff include School Psychologists, School Counselors, School Social Workers, Mental Health Professionals, and Wellness Coordinators. These professionals are available to provide resources to students, and to assist parents, families, school staff, and administrators. If you would like to consult with ABC personnel, you may contact your school site to learn who the school-based mental health professional(s) on campus are. You may also contact ABC’s Safe Schools department at (562)926-5566 Ext. 21154.
 
Sincerely,
 
Dr. Cheryl Bodger, Director of School Services, 562 926-5566 Ext. 21120
Dr. Rhonda Buss, Director of Secondary Schools, 562 926-5566 Ext. 21121
ABC Unified School District
 
*See attached for guides, resources, and additional information
 
Resources
 
For additional information about mental health and suicide:
Suicide and Crisis Hotlines
In an emergency, call 911
  • (800)273-8255 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
  • (310)855-4673 or (800)852-8336 TeenLine (Available 6pm-10pm)
  • Text TEEN to 839-863
  • (800)843-4200 California Youth Crisis Line
  • (877)437-8422 National Drug and Alcohol Abuse Hotline
  • (800)854-7771 LA County Department of Mental Health ACCESS 24/7
For additional information about 13 Reasons Why:
ABC Unified School District’s Community Resource Team (CRT) Partners
  • Alternative Options Counseling Center (562)921-5701
  • Asian Pacific Counseling & Treatment Centers (562)860-8838
  • California Conference for Equality and Justice (CCEJ) (562)435-8184
  • Casa Youth Shelter (562)594-6825
  • Community Family Guidance Center (562)924-5526
  • Helpline Youth Counseling, Inc. (562)273-0722
  • Masada Homes (310)715-2020
  • Olive Crest (562)866-8956
  • Pacific Clinics (562)907-7429
  • Pathways Community Services (562)865-3644
  • Pathways Volunteer Hospice (562)531-3031
  • Penny Lane (323)318-9960
  • South Asian Network (562)403-0488
  • Wesley Health Center (Fedde) (562)867-7999