Profiling Risk and Need for School-based Suicide Prevention
​Given the complex problems facing youth today, the mental health and well-being of students is a growing concern. The Centers for Disease Control in its report, Healthy People 2010, has set forth a national goal to reduce suicide attempt rates by more than half from 2.6% in 1999 to 1.0% by 2010.


Suicidal behavior among adolescents represents a progressive and multidimensional public health problem. A typology for suicidal youth based on commonly researched and modifiable risk factors would make an important contribution for creating a comprehensive framework to prevent teen suicide. Such a typology would take into account the special needs of different types of suicidal youth and allow school personnel trained as gatekeepers to better coordinate identification and referral efforts.

Create a typology of youth at risk for suicide attempt or ideation using a Latent Class Analysis (LCA) of suicide risk factors (e.g. depressive symptoms, substance use, etc.)

Explore the relationship between the typologies of youth at risk for suicide attempt or ideation with referrals for mental health services and service utilization.

Modify a gatekeeper training program designed to train school staff to identify and to refer youth at risk for suicide attempt or ideation by incorporating the typology created in bullet 1.

Juan Pena, PhD
Monica Matthieu, PhD

Center for Disease Control and Prevention


Luis Zayas, PhD

Juan Pena, PhD
(314) 935-9636