Crisis Plan

The concept of crisis prevention is important to the maintenance of an educational environment which is safe, organized, and conducive to learning. The purpose of a crisis prevention plan is to offer an effective and strategic method for dealing with a serious or unforeseen threat, danger, or event.

Your division head has a copy of the complete crisis plan. If you as a staff member identify a crisis, which might include a suicide threat, death of a student (or parent or sibling of a student), drug or alcohol overdose, a medical problem, or severe out-of norm behavior, you can start the referral process by contacting a member of the Student Services division. Contact the following specialists by phone:

Robert Hartwig Associate Principal 718-4012
Mary Redding Division Head for Special Education 718-4021
Denise Caffarello Student Services Secretary 718-4022
Stacy Wodka RN PEL-SN Nurse   718-4171
Jennifer Zacharski Psychologist   718-4063
Chris Ludwig Social Worker 718-4172
Roger Mills Outreach Counselor 718-4068

Once you, another staff member, a parent, or student have referred a situation to the crisis team, the referral procedures chart will be followed.

Crisis Reaction Plan

In case of building or community trauma, the principal May choose to initiate a Crisis Reaction Plan, which allows for direct intervention to the school population through a small group and individual format. This plan is appropriate in emergency situations which may impact on large groups of students, i.e. accident, death, or threat to building safety. If this plan is put into effect, you should report to the area assignment on the attached sheet, where an administrator and specialist will work with you and your class.

Referral Procedures Chart

Identification of a possible problem by teacher, student, administrator, parent, or counselor.

Drug use or possession in school Suicide attempt or
suicidal ideation
Medical problem Death-staff or student Severe out of 
norm behavior
Dean, Outreach counselor, 
Police Liason, immediate parent contact
begin BGHS substance abuse policy*
Psychologist, Social Worker, Outreach Counselor,
Nurse, Assistant Principal for Student Services,
Generalist Counselor, immediate parent contact made, family conference as needed, referral made*
Nurse-referrals to parents, emergency care, outreach counselor, trainer as needed* Principal, Counselor follow-up Public information plans made and executed by principal* Counselor, dean, police counselor, division head. In life-threatening or substance abuse involved, refer and involve parents*
Follow-up parent conference,
remediation plan developed
Follow up as neeeded with peers, parents siblings, staff      

Screening Committee (consist of all specialists listed above) gather data, develop intervention plans, discuss building strategy, advise principal, counselor, etc. as needed; also to monitor ongoing situations. Post-intervention plans to be determined by this group.

Referrals to: Feedback to: Initiates:
Outside agencies as needed, special education Counselor, Principal, faculty as needed.  Necessary administrative action

Communication by any of these recipients of referrals to the building principal or designees will be made in all cases as soon as possible.

Suicide Threat

As a staff member, you are in a unique position to pick of signals of a potentially suicidal student. If you believe a student is suicidal, contact a student services specialist immediately. We will follow up with the student and parent.

Cues are most often found in:

  • Student's writing
  • Personal Group Discussions
  • Conversations Before or After Class
  • Teacher observations; change in mood

What to do:

  • Trust your instincts. Don't worry about overreacting.
  • Question the student briefly and privately.
  • If talking to the student privately is not possible, call the student services office and speak to the outreach counselor, psychologist, social worker, nurse, counselor, or assistant principal to make us aware of the need to see the student immediately. We would rather deal with false alarms than miss a serious situation. State that you feel the student should be seen and stress the sense of emergency. It is crucial for us to see the referred student within the day. Please do not work alone. Mental health professionals do not work alone on this problem.
  • Follow up with your referral to make sure the student was seen. You can expect a general assessment of the situation.

Suicide warning signs:

  • Preoccupation with death or expressing suicidal thoughts
  • Giving away prized possessions, making a will or other "final arrangements"
  • Changes in sleeping patterns- too much or too little
  • Sudden and extreme changes in eating habits, losing or gaining weight (signs of depression)
  • Depression
  • Withdrawal from friends and family or other significant behavioral changes (breaking away from significant others)
  • Changes in school performance, lowered grades, cutting classes, dropping out of activities. The reverse extreme is also significant (perfectionism)
  • Personality changes, such as nervousness, outbursts, anger, or apathy about appearance or health
  • Use of drugs or alcohol
  • Self-abusive behavior or accident prone
  • Recent suicide of friend or relative
  • Previous suicide attempts
  • Broken romance
  • Verbal warning signs - "I've decided to kill myself," "I wish I were dead," "If I don't see you again," "thanks for everything," "I'm tired of life."