LAGRANGE – The focus was on high school students’ well being on Tuesday after the apparent suicide of a 16-year-old Keystone High School sophomore.
The teenager was found in her home at Pheasant Run around 6:30 a.m. Tuesday and Lorain County Sherriff’s Lt. Donald Barker said they do not suspect “anything suspicious,” but police are launching an investigation into the death.
Following the early morning report, administrative members of the Keystone Schools had a meeting to discuss how to release the information to students and staff at the high school.
“It was a day long process,” Keystone Schools Superintendent Jay Arbaugh said. “We wanted to make sure we’re providing support for the students.”
After the meeting, the administration called in a crisis team of licensed counselors from Lorain County to meet with and talk to small groups of students who were closest to the 16-year-old.
Statements were read to the junior high school and high school classes – which have about 150 students per class – and letters were sent home with each student so that their parents could address the issue with their child if they chose.
In the letter administrators expressed grief about the death for the entire Keystone “school family” and offered condolences to the 16-year-old’s family and friends.
They also wrote about the effect a fellow student’s suicide can have on the rest of the student body.
“It would not be unusual for your child to behave and express themselves differently during the next few weeks. Such an incident can have a profound effect on students,” the letter read. Administrators added that anyone who is having a difficult time dealing with the loss should be referred to the high school office.
County Coroner Stephen Evans said he wasn’t able to release any information on the death Tuesday.