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Counselor's Corner


SOS Counseling Curriculum Lesson: 7th GRADE Signs of Suicide and Depression


SOS Counseling Curriculum Lesson - Signs of Suicide and Depression


Dear Seahawk Family,



The teen years are marked by a roller-coaster of emotions. It can be easy to misread depression as normal adolescent turmoil; however, depression and anxiety appear to be occurring more often and at a much earlier age. Depression, the most common of mental illnesses, can lead to suicidal thoughts and actions. In fact, suicide is the second leading cause of death among those 14-24 years of age. The good news is that depression can be treated and cured, and suicide can be prevented.

To proactively address this issue, we are presenting the Capistrano Unified School District Board approved Signs of Suicide curriculum and Brief Screening for Adolescent Depression (BSAD) to all 7th grade students at Shorecliffs Middle School. This program has been used by thousands of schools in the USA for over twelve years. Data shows that this program increases awareness of depression and help-seeking behaviors of adolescents. As a result, it has helped reduce suicide attempts.

Our goals in presenting this program are straightforward:


 To help our students understand that depression is treatable and help them assess whether or not they may have symptoms consistent with depression
 To explain that suicide is preventable that often occurs as a result of untreated depression
 To provide students training in how to identify serious depression and potential suicidal behaviors in themselves and their friends
 To impress upon teens that they can help themselves or a friend by taking the simple step of talking to a responsible adult about their concerns.


Eva Avendano, the school counselor at Shorecliffs Middle School will be presenting the SOS curriculum and the BSAD brief screening for Adolescent Depression in 7th Grade PE classes on Thursday, December 7th, 2017 . Ms. Avendano will provide handouts on the symptoms of depression and suicidal behavior, show a 25 minute video in which teen actors model how to recognize and gain help for depression and suicidal behavior for themselves or their peers, and provide a self-administered screening tool for students to determine if they might be experiencing characteristics of depression or risk of suicide. School counselors will review the BSAD screening tool and speak with any student who self-reported a ranking indicating a likelihood for depression or risk of suicide, or express an interest in speaking to the school counselor. These meetings are usually brief and are not considered therapy nor are they a substitute for a comprehensive mental health evaluation. The meetings help us better understand students’ reactions to the material and whether they have any experience with depression or thoughts around suicide. Parents/Guardians will be informed if their child meets with a counselor along with any recommendations for additional support.

We encourage parents and guardians to speak with your son or daughter after the presentation. If you have any questions or concerns about this program, please contact Mrs. Avendano at Shorecliffs Middle School.



Dr. Brad Baker                                                       




Eva Avendano, MS, PPS
School Counselor


If you do not want your child to participate in this curriculum, please sign the following Non-Consent form and return it to School Counselor-Mrs. Avendano.



Parent/Guardian Non-Consent form:



I, ________________________________, do not give permission for my child, ________________________, to participate in the Signs of Suicide curriculum and Brief Screening for Adolescent Depression that is being offered to all 7th grade students at Shorecliffs Middle School.



____________________________________________                                                                __________________
Signature of Parent or Guardian                                                                                                               Date




School Counseling Report 2016-2017

School Counselor- Eva Avendano

Middle School is an exciting and challenging time for students. Counselor- Mrs. Avendano is available to assist students in meeting their social or emotional needs by providing classroom guidance and short-term individual and group counseling. If you are a student and would like to meet with your school counselor, just fill out a student counseling referral. The student counseling referral can be found in the counseling locker section or you can request one in the front office. Please feel free to contact your school counselor at 949-498-1660, with any questions or concerns:

      School Counseling Services:


  • Individual and small group counseling
  • Crisis Intervention
  • Peer Conflict Mediation
  • Coping strategies
  • Peer relationships and effective social skills
  • Education in understanding self and others
  • Communication, problem-solving, decision-making and conflict resolution
  • Community & Outside Agency Resour

Counselor Introduction to Second Step Program

Second Step-  School Counseling Curriculum


The research-based, comprehensive Second Step program teaches important life skills in age-appropriate ways. Second Step program helps schools teach and model essential communication, coping, and decision-making skills. The program benefits the school by reduced aggression and support for a more inclusive environment that helps students stay in school, make good choices, and experience social and academic success. 


This School-year 2017-2018 lessons will be presented to each grade level:

  • 6th Grade:
    • Working in Groups
    • Emotions: Brains and Body
    • Calming Down Strategies
    • Study Skills


  • 7th Grade:
    • Coping with Stress
    • SOS
    • Study Skills


  • 8th Grade:
    • Coping with Stress
    • De-escalating a Tense Situation
    • Study Skills

Second Step Video Intro: http://www.cfchildren.org/second-step/success-stories/austin

Non-Discrimination Statement

The Capistrano Unified School District prohibits discrimination, harassment, intimidation, and bullying in all district activities, programs, and employment based upon actual or perceived gender, gender identity, gender expression, race, ethnicity, color, religion, ancestry, nationality, national origin, ethnic group identification, sex, sexual orientation, marital or parental status, pregnancy, age, physical or mental disability or on the basis of a person’s association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics. Reference: AR 1312.3, BP 1312.3 and BP 5183.

Rich Montgomery, Executive Director, Human Resource Services/Compliance
33122 Valle Road, San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675
(949) 234-9200

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