Date
25 September 2017
Students will undergo mental health education and counseling under a two-year trial program designed to recognize suicidal tendencies. Photo: Internet
Students will undergo mental health education and counseling under a two-year trial program designed to recognize suicidal tendencies. Photo: Internet

Nine schools to pilot suicide prevention program

A pilot scheme to better spot suicidal students will be implemented in the upcoming academic term.

Secretary for Education Eddie Ng made the announcement Friday after the Committee on Prevention of Student Suicides proposed a two-year trial program in nine schools.

Teachers, social workers and nurses with psychiatry training will work together to help students with suicidal tendencies, public broadcaster RTHK reports.

Committee chairman Paul Yip said the idea is to increase awareness. He said the government will participate in the scheme.

The measures include enhanced training for teachers and subsidies for schools to enable them to run activities such as school retreats to promote mental health education.

The measures are in response to a recent spate of student suicides.

In March, the Education Bureau (EDB) came unde fire for its approach to the problem.

Legislator Ip Kin-yuen, who represents the education functional constituency, said EDB’s solutions are merely supplementary and do not address the core issue of pressure on students and teachers, according to Apple Daily.

Teachers find it difficult to devote enough time to interact with students given their heavy work load, he said.

– Contact us at english@hkej.com

RA

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