Schools are Not Responsible for Teen Suicides caused by Bullying

Teen Suicides in Schools

Mental Health Speaker for Teens – Jeff Yalden

Teen expert and mental health professional, Jeff Yalden says, “Schools should not be held liable for teen suicides and if they are you are going to lose more great teachers and educators because this is a responsibility they shouldn’t have to undertake.”

Another Indiana community braves the weather to get their questions answered as Youth Motivational Speaker and Mental Health Teen Specialist, Jeff Yalden, delivers from his heart and shares his experiences and expertise about teen suicide.

The visit was incredible.  “Sometimes you just need a voice from the outside that can risk being perceived as insensitive when you need to speak the truth!”, says Jeff Yalden.

Why is Teen Suicide so Prevalent Today?

Jeff says, that the combination of greater expectations – parents/families, school, peer to peer, and individual expectations can sometimes be overwhelming for today’s youth.  Cell phones and social media are great tools when used properly, but the challenge is, is how responsible are teens with having their own cell phones and social media platforms when teens spend upwards of 50 hours a week on screen time?  Who is monitoring their use?  Teens are sleeping with their cell phones and using them as alarms.  Do they turn the phones on airplane mode when they sleep?  Not many of them are this responsible.  This hurts them in their quality of sleep per night.  Combine the lack of sleep with today’s eating habits and lack of exercise.  Three tips right there that can change a teenagers mood and overall health and wellness – Better sleep, more nutritious meals, more exercise.  Also add the fact that today’s teens are so invested in texting and communicating through their social media platforms, they’ve lost the simple ability to problem solve and their coping skills in challenging situations aren’t where they should be.

Self esteem and personal value is compromised too when today’s teens are constantly worried about what is going on and what is being said.  Teens have specific times when they post pictures.  If they don’t have enough “LIKES” on their picture in a certain time they will quickly pull the picture so they’re not laughed at by their friends.  Today’s teens are feeling inadequate when they compare their own lives to the best selfie moments they see from their friends social media platforms.  Teens don’t think that their friend took 306 selfies to create the best angle in the sun with the right amount of light on their best side to catch the perfect picture in the perfect moment.  But, to a teenager sitting at home they are quick to ask themselves, “Why aren’t I having fun like they are?”

Teens are stressed and the speed of hurt for today’s teens is faster than the speed of hurt for us as parents when we were their age.

Bullying is a problem.  It’s always been a problem.  Cyber-Bullying has taken it to a whole new level with cell phones, pictures, and social media.  Parents are constantly bringing this to the schools and asking our educators to fix what parents need to be doing.  The schools are limited by law in what they can do when kids walk out the building.  Also, let’s not forget that bullying happens where teachers and staff aren’t around.  Doesn’t happen in the classroom or in the halls where teachers are.  It happens on the buses, playground, walking or riding to and from school.  Is this a school districts problem?  I don’t think so and I will argue my point everyday.  It’s not fair that parents today are placing the blame on the schools and the teachers.  “It’s not fair!”, says Jeff Yalden.

Teachers and staff members do their best to promote diversity and students respecting one another.  Ask teachers and staff members to be vigilant to the possibilities it’s happening where they might be and they are.  Teachers and staff members are aware it’s happening, but to prove something and to spend their time having to deal with this childish behavior takes them away from doing their jobs.  Teachers are not babysitters.  They are professional educators that inspire, teach, motivate, and challenge our youth and they do a damn good job.  Furthermore, if they were babysitting and making sure that bullying doesn’t happen, then we as parents would be complaining they’re not doing their job in the classroom.

Dealing with Teen Suicides

What is the answer?  Teen suicides and the responsibility of schools is a very simple understanding.  Parents need to do a better job educating their own children and teaching them to ignore.  Yes, “IGNORE”, says Jeff Yalden.  Leave it alone and don’t even give it any attention because if you do you are pouring fuel to the fire and that is what the bully wants.  They want to know they are getting in your head.  Parents need to teach their children to have higher self-respect for themselves rather than to let someone their same age control their emotions.  Walk away and ignore.  Surround yourself with other like-minded people.  Jeff says, “Tigers don’t lose sleep to the opinion of sheep.”  The question you need to ask is, “Are you raising tigers or sheep?”

If parents would do a better job taking care of their parental responsibilities with their children than teachers could focus on their job at hand.  The bottom line is that bullying will be around forever, and we cannot prevent it, but we can prevent how our children deal with it and that is a parents job while teachers and staff members will do their job making sure it doesn’t happen while they are present and having programs that teach love and compassion for others.

Kentucky Supreme Court Looks to See Whether Schools Can Be Held Liable for Teen Suicides:

For more information about Jeff Yalden and his programs with high school and middle school assemblies, please visit

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Author:Jeff Yalden, Youth Motivational Speaker

Youth Motivational Speaker & Teen Life Coach. Since 1992, Jeff Yalden has been mesmerizing audiences with his engaging style and passion. Jeff is a story-teller that every where he speaks, he guarantees he is real and in the moment, perfect for every audience. He is one of a kind. He's interactive and nobody pours as much energy and passion into their programs that Jeff does. Guaranteed, Jeff will be a defining moment and a highlight of your students lives.

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