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Important Letter to Parents Regarding "13 Reasons Why"
Dear Parents,

Some of you may be aware of a new series recently released on Netflix entitled 13 Reasons Why. The series is based on a 2007 book by Jay Asher depicting the story of a high school girl who leaves behind tapes after committing suicide. The tapes describe events that contributed to the character’s tragic decision and actions.

Netflix released all of the episodes at once, and it has already become one of their most viewed series. Professional organizations are now expressing serious concern about the appropriateness of the series. The episodes are very dark, intense, and include mature/graphic scenes and language not appropriate for students. Multiple scenes portray actions of bullying and depression. It may be overwhelming for emotionally vulnerable students.

We encourage you to initiate conversation with your child(ren) about the seriousness of issues portrayed in 13 Reasons Why. Encourage them to reach out to any adult if/when they are feeling overwhelmed or if they are harboring concerns about a friend or classmate. Please also know that anyone (parents, students, community members) can report anonymous concerns via our Safe Schools Helpline (located at bottom of the district’s main web page).

The National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) also released guidance for educators at the following link: http://bit.ly/NASP_Guide_13Reasons. Each staff member will receive this information along with follow up from school counselors.

As an integral part of your child’s daily life, Independence Local Schools continues to offer support for our students and families. As always, please don’t hesitate to contact your child’s guidance counselor, teacher, or principal with any concerns/questions you may have .

Sincerely,

Ben Hegedish
Superintendent
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Independence High School  |  6001 Archwood Road  |  Independence, OH 44131
P: (216) 642-5860  |  F: (216) 642-5886 | Hours: Mon-Fri 7:00 AM - 3:30 PM