Living Sky School Division has announced they will be meeting with community partners in response to the news that two high school students have tragically died by suicide recently.
In a statement Monday, the division said it is "deeply saddened by the recent tragedies in our community."
"Over the last two weeks we have lost two students to sudden and unexpected deaths. Our thoughts are with family, friends and our entire school community during this very difficult time," said Shannon Lessard, the division’s communications coordinator, in a release.
Both of the students who died were enrolled at North Battleford Comprehensive High School. Most recently, the school division sent out a letter to parents on Jan. 21 to inform them a Grade 10 student had died the day before.
The school division has also announced students will not be required to participate iin final exams, due to the recent tragedies.
"We plan to run exam week as previoulsy planned; however, students will not be required to write final exams. Final assessments will be made available to those who are prepared to do so. For students not completing final assessments, teachers will base final grades upon the course work completed over the semester," the school division said in a letter to parents.
Lessard also announced today the school division’s counselling team and its community partners are in the school to offer support to the students "for the foreseeable future."
"We are working hard to offer a stable environment for our students and staff and will make respectful modifications as needed," she added.
"An open line of communication has been established with parents, and we will continue to be in close contact with our school community."
Lessard said the school division is consulting with a "leading tragedy specialist," and is planning to bring community partners together "to discuss the complex issues facing our community."
"This is a testimony to the commitment of parents, schools and community leaders doing the right things for our children," she added.
The division is encouraging parents and students to use the support services available to discuss any of their concerns.
Lessard said North Battleford Comprehensive High School has in-school counsellors available for youth to speak to, if they are struggling now or in the weeks ahead. They can be reached by contacting the school directly.
The division is also advising youth to contact the Kids' Help Phone, available 24 hours a day, at 1-800-668-6868, or call Saskatchewan HealthLine at 811, "if they are feeling overwhelmed."
Lessard said the phone support line provides qualified, therapeutic staff who can speak to youth about their concerns.
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