School crisis expert Dr. Scott Poland talks to residents of the south metro Denver area about teen suicide prevention and parenting in the digital age. Hosted by three Douglas County organizations, the special event took place Sept. 19 at the Family Resource Pavilion in east Centennial.

School crisis expert Dr. Scott Poland talks to residents of the south metro Denver area about teen suicide prevention and parenting in the digital age. Hosted by three Douglas County organizations, the special event took place Sept. 19 at the Family Resource Pavilion in east Centennial.

Following the 1999 mass shooting at Columbine High School in Littleton, Dr. Scott Poland visited the school to console members of the grieving community. He did the same after the Feb. 14 school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

When tragedy strikes in the form of a school shooting, suicide or natural disaster, Poland — a nationally recognized expert on school crisis, youth violence and suicide intervention — assists crisis teams, school staff, parents and communities in the recovery process.

Poland shared his insights Sept. 19 in a south metro Denver presentation about teen suicide prevention and the challenges of parenting in the digital age.

“I love the fact that he said, `You are the parent and you need to be involved,’ ” said Denise Atkinson, a mother of two students in Douglas County School District, who wanted to learn more about the challenges youth face. She’s noticed that some students at the middle school level struggle with coping skills.

“A lot of parents,” she said, “are afraid to ask questions.”

The special event was a collaboration of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, the Douglas County School District and the Douglas…

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