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Colorado Teacher writes letters to all her students after a teen's suicide attempt

After teen’s suicide attempt, this Colorado teacher wrote letters to each student. Now, she’ll share her story on a bigger stage.

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Brittni Darras, an English teacher at Rampart High School in the Colorado Springs-based Academy School District, was shocked by what she learned about one of her students in a parent-teacher conference. The outgoing teen had recently attempted suicide, the girl’s mother told Darras.

“It changed the way I see my role as a teacher,” she said.The news made Darras realize that other students were probably suffering in silence, too. She decided to write personalized cards to her more than 100 students telling them how much they mattered.

Last fall, Darras’ efforts earned her the 2016 Hero of Mental Health award from AspenPointe, a nonprofit mental health provider in Colorado Springs. In July, she’ll speak at the TEDxMileHigh 2017 event at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House in Denver.

July 10, 2017 | By jhatt | Category: Prevention and School Culture

District News

Kim working with a student

The award wasn't a surprise to anyone at Rocky Heights Middle School except for Kim Chlumsky herself.

 

 

 

Banner displayed on a brick wall that says "What are your Sources of Strength?"

A fairly new partnership between DCSD’s Prevention & School Culture team and Douglas County Teen Court coordinators is providing a new path for youth offenders. Additionally, Sources of Strength— now present in most DCSD high schools and some middle schools— is establishing a healthy culture and climate with the goal of catching youth long before they fall into unhealthy behaviors or consider taking their own lives.

 

Cohl in Athens at World Championship game, holding a large American flag over his head

Ponderosa High School student and wrestler Cohlton Schultz has just returned back from Athens, Greece to Colorado after becoming the first United States World Champion in 20 years in Greco-Roman wrestling.

Ponderosa Assistant Principal and Athletic Director, Tim Ottman led a 30-minute assembly Wednesday for Cohl, joined by Cohl’s parents, his coaches from the Olympic Training Center, his former Ponderosa wrestling coach (and current Assistant Principal) Corey McNellis, and current wrestling coach Tito Rinaldis.