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  • A Preview of the SOS Signs of Suicide Student Program

SOS Signs of Suicide is an evidence-based program designed for middle and high school students that teaches youth to identify signs of depression and suicide in themselves and their friends. SOS has been distributed to over 10,000 schools and organizations across the country.

SOS student training can take place in as little as one class period. The program consists of two primary components:

SOS Student Videos

The 20-minute educational videos (one each for middle and high school) show students how to identify signs and symptoms of depression and suicide. They encourage help-seeking behavior through the ACT® technique: Acknowledge signs of suicide in a friend, show your friend that you Care, Tell a trusted adult.

Both videos contain age-appropriate dramatizations of students demonstrating common signs of depression and suicide along with the right and wrong ways to respond using the ACT technique. The middle school video combines dramatizations with and round-table discussion, while the high school video includes real-life stories from young adults who have sought help and who share their journeys of recovery.

Sample the SOS program videos by checking out the trailers below.

Middle School Program Trailer

High School Program Trailer

Brief Screen for Adolescent Depression

After discussing the videos, students complete the Brief Screen for Adolescent Depression (BSAD), a short, non-diagnostic, educational screening form which screens for signs of depression and suicide. The BSAD can be completed anonymously as a tool to educate students and encourage help-seeking, or with students identifying themselves, which aids staff in recognizing students who may require follow-up.

At the end of the program, all students complete a response slip indicating whether they wish to talk to someone about themselves or a friend.

What the Program Includes


SOS Quick-Start Guide

The SOS Quick-Start Guide is a 7-page guide to walk you through how to get started with SOS. Topics include tips for program preparation, classroom training, following up with students, training faculty and staff, and engaging parents.


Refresher Videos

SOS includes shorter videos that can be used as refresher content with students who have been trained in previous years.


Supplemental Lesson Plans

Lesson plans can be used to extend SOS programming or added to an existing health curriculum, and address topics such as talking to trusted adults, identifying and building healthy coping skills, and building resilience.


Reinforcement Materials

Giveaway materials such as posters, newsletters, and more to reinforce the ACT message with your students. Students can also access our ACT webpage to learn more and be directed to resources outside the classroom.


Faculty/Staff Training Materials

Use the ACT message to train faculty and staff at your school on how to respond to a student in crisis. Provided materials include the 16-minute Training Trusted Adults video, a sample slide deck, and an informational handout.


Parent Engagement Materials

Keep parents informed and involve them in your suicide prevention efforts. Materials include a sample slide deck for a parent night, short videos on topics specific to parents, sample active and passive consent letters, and a parent page where parents can explore SOS from home.

SOS Online

SOS Signs of Suicide is a fully digital program that requires only an internet connection. Your school will receive a unique login to the online portal, where you can stream program videos and download all program materials.

New program developments are automatically added to your portal as they become available. SOS is priced on an annual, per-school basis. Check out our shop for pricing info.


Frequently Asked Questions

SOS Training

While there is no training or certification required to start using SOS in your school, we do offer an in-person Train-the-Trainer option for schools or organizations seeking additional support. Check out our trainings page to learn more.

More Resources

Check our webinars page for upcoming and recordings of past webinars for more information on the SOS program.