High School Resources

High school can be a tough time for students and many struggle with their mental health. They may face challenges developing social connectedness in their school community, engaging in help-seeking behaviors, building life skills, and seeking treatment.

JED has numerous programs and resources to help students have a healthy and positive high school experience.

Helpful Resources for Educators

JED's Comprehensive Approach to Mental Health Promotion and Suicide Prevention for High Schools

The High School Comprehensive Approach provides high schools and districts with a framework to support and improve student mental health, reduce risk for suicide, and prepare students emotionally for the transition out of high school and into young adulthood. This approach encompasses a series of recommendations grouped under broader, thematic domains, which schools can undertake to ensure a holistic approach to student mental health and suicide risk prevention.

National Policy Institute: Addressing Youth Mental Health Needs In Schools

COVID-19’s impact on the nation’s mental health will be apparent for years to come. Yet, more concerning is the impact on children and adolescents. Suicide and self-harm increased significantly in 2020 in kids ages 11-17 years, with more than 35% reporting having thoughts of suicide more than half the days of the month. In partnership with Mental Health America and Kaiser Permanente, this report highlights key principles to inform policies and practices of reopening schools to help youth early and through equitable means.

JED’s “You Can Help” Trainings

A fundamental part of a comprehensive approach to supporting mental health and preventing suicide is to train community members to identify and support students who may be struggling with a mental health challenge, and refer them to professional help, if needed. JED has created You Can Help a Student (YCHAS) training resources for teachers and staff to understand how to identify and support struggling students, and refer them when necessary. These trainings also include pre- and post-assessment tools to measure learning outcomes.

Each and Every Day Documentary: School Screening Opportunity

Created in partnership with MTV, and from filmmakers Sheila Nevins and Alexandra Shiva, this powerful documentary explores youth mental health through the eyes of nine different young people who have attempted suicide or struggled with suicidal thoughts. They share not only their challenges, but also their recoveries and hard-won wisdom about what made their life worth living. The film offers relatable and authentic portraits of young people dealing with suicide and emphasizes help seeking and hope.

Sound It Out

Sound It Out uses the power of music to help parents and caregivers have meaningful conversations with their kids about emotional wellbeing. Conversations were facilitated between middle-school aged kids, their caregivers, and musical artists who then transformed the kids’ emotions and experiences into songs. The exclusive album is available to stream along with free, expert-vetted resources in English and Spanish to guide conversations with caregivers and their children about emotional wellbeing.

Helpful Resource for Students

Let's Talk NYC

To support mental health, the Let’s Talk NYC Campaign was created to increase communication around mental health in city schools by encouraging students to reach out to school staff and providing staff with training to help them support students. While this program was designed for NYC, it can be used by anyone, anywhere. If you’re ready to talk to someone about your mental health struggles, this guide can help.

Pressure to be Perfect Toolkit

Pressure to be Perfect is about recognizing that what you see posted by others is just one part of their story—a single post or video rarely reflects all that is happening behind the scenes. This toolkit, a collaboration between Instagram and JED, was created to help young people figure out the best ways to use Instagram and includes tips and tools to improve their experience, connecting them with resources for further thought and discussion.

Chat Safe: Tools and tips to help young people communicate safely about suicide

With a lack of evidence about safe and helpful online peer-to-peer communication about suicide, and little guidance to help young people safely discuss suicide online, #chatsafe was created to offer a set of evidence-informed guidelines to help young people to communicate safely online about suicide.

JED Programs

JED High School

High School students face unprecedented challenges around their mental health and emotional well-being. JED is dedicated to helping school districts and high schools evaluate and strengthen their programming and systems related to suicide prevention, mental health, and substance misuse prevention with our JED High School program.

Seize the Awkward

There are different ways to start the conversation about mental health and yet, no wrong way. In partnership with the Ad Council and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, JED’s Seize the Awkward has videos, GIFs, conversation starters and more to help make starting a conversation with a high schooler, well, less awkward.

JED Storytelling

Sharing stories is a powerful way to reduce shame, prejudice, and secrecy, and inspire us to be proactive about our mental health. JED has two video series that help shine a personal light on mental health. JED Voices features intimate conversations with notable and influential mental health advocates and JED Storytelling features personal experiences of real people who’ve struggled with their mental health.

Making the Transition to College

Preparing emotionally for life after high school involves knowledge and skill development. JED’s Set to Go Program offers resources for parents, students, and educators to help students develop the emotional skills needed to prepare them for these transitions.