Therapy With Schools

Lance Still and Kayla Martin

Within the past 60 years suicide rates in the United States have quadroupled for males and doubled for females. For every 100-200 attempts, there’s 1 completed youth suicide. In Texas, suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death for people between the ages of 10 and 34 the number of deaths via suicide being 3,778 as of 2019. “I would assume it’s around that range, “ junior Zohee Zaragosa said, “but it’s not surprising given the stuff that kids go through during that time and how little help there is for so many of them not given the coping skills on how to handle it..” Kids need help but the lack of counselors interferes with this.


Student mental health has been a concern among the Round Rock ISD staff as of late. With two mental health centers as well as two therapists and bus drivers being trained on how to look for symptoms in suicidal students a change is being ushered into place.” would say so but a lot of it is wanting to get better for yourself. Not so much like when I was in there, when I was in group, alll of us got the same amount of help as everybody else, it was all fair game pretty much. But there were certain people who didn’t wanna trust it and didn’t wanna work to get better and that’s the difference is if you yourself want to get better you will get better,” Zohee said, “you will get better but if you don’t want help then you’re not going to show improvement. Because one of the things in there, in the hospital, is that nobody actually wants to get better because the state that you’re in right now you’re in a really crappy situation and you feel like all hope is lost and being ok and being labeled as recovered is scary because for the first time in a long time you have something to lose and that’s being labeled as recovered because when you’re not labeled as recovered and you’re depressed and you’re feeling all these things and you’re noted as on suicidie watch and all these things, everything is downhill and you feel like you have nothing to lose but once you’re labeled as recovered and you get pushed out to the real world again you have everything to lose and it’s really scary.”


Bus drivers being trained to look for suicidal students is nothing new, as in 2018 300 bus drivers were trained in suicide prevention for the first time. The training continued as weeks before the school year of 2019, Amy Grosso, the districts’ Future Readiness Coordinator, gathered with 8 groups of 36 bus drivers to continue the training. “Yeah,” said student M.D, “that would actually help a lot of kids in that state of mind.” Grosso said that the main symptoms in suicidal students tend to be poor sleep, recklessness, becoming withdrawn and mood change.


At the moment, the two centers are only in Round Rock and Cedar Ridge High School while the therapists are coming from the community agency of Blue Bonnet Trails. “I think it would but I think it would take somebody giving it a try and I think it would take the right approach in dynamic and advertising of it, cause when you just label something as therapy nobody wants to go,” Zargosa said, “nobody wants to actually talk about what’s going on. It takes approaching it a certain way, it takes like, I know, like, with my recovery a lot of it was the therapist that I got, I know if I had gotten anybody else it wouldn’t have ended  the way it did, like he changed a lot about me and that’s because I connected with him so much. I think it just takes advertising it to the right audience a certain way and like I said I think it also takes educating our teachers and our staff members on what to watch out for, not just saying that it’s there for anybody that needs it because the person that needs it the most is not going to be the one that’s going.“ While the change was being pushed by mental health groups such as the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) for years, the recent mass shootings in Texas added to the need for these centers. Luckily, these services are free.


With this program expanding throughout Texas, before we know it it’s going to be in all of our schools.