CHICAGO — Chicago Public Schools announced Tuesday a new initiative aimed at mental health awareness and resources for students.

CPS is the first district to implement what is called the ‘Please Stay” initiative.

The program was developed by Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation and Find Your Anchor. It’s a direct response to higher rates of suicide, depression and anxiety among students.

The Surgeon General recently released a report detailing the youth mental health crisis which was happening before covid and was exacerbated by the pandemic.

The program focuses on mental health and suicide prevention in students between 7th and 12th grade.

The initiative starts with a 20-minute classroom activity facilitated by teachers. Students will watch a video and then discuss mental health and resources available.

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The initiative is districtwide and one of several measures cps is expanding to support mental health and the well-being of students both inside and outside of the classroom.