Featured Event: Parent Night

Sources of Strength Parent Night

1.5 hour evening event

Hosted as a joint event between Gunn High School and Paly High School in Palo Alto, CA.

The event focused on how parents, educators and students can work together at home and in our schools to prevent the epidemics of bullying, addiction and suicide.

The evening consisted of an opening introduction which included Gunn and Paly educators providing an overview of the Sources of Strength program.

Dr. Shashank Joshi, Stanford Associate Professor of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, also shared the research behind Sources of Strength, which shows that creating a preventive culture in our community that fosters an epidemic of Hope, Help and Strength is the most effective form of suicide prevention.

Parents then broke out into student-led sessions focused on one of four strengths: Family Support, Spirituality, Healthy Activities and Mental Health/Medical Access.

In these 8- to 10-minute sessions, two student presenters explained the strength, shared with attendees their own experience, and provided a space for conversations about what we all struggle with in life and where we find the strength to overcome our challenges.

Parents had the opportunity to rotate through each strength and hear different experiences. The evening wrapped up with a choral reading of the mission statement and the chance for parents to complete a survey to give feedback.

Between 40 and 50 parents attended the event, and 16 Gunn and Paly student leaders were involved.

Parents were pleased with the event, especially with learning about different strengths on the wheel and about hearing student perspectives.

Key to the success of the Sources of Strength program is to develop awareness and a shared vocabulary at home and in our community so that families can support the work we are doing in our schools.