Gaggle Launches 24/7 Student Crisis Line, Powered by AWS, and Staffed by Trained Crisis Counselors

Dallas, Texas (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Gaggle’s new ReachOut student crisis line has launched and is rolling out to K-12 districts nationwide, helping schools immediately support students with live, trained crisis counselors.

Today’s youth continue to struggle with their mental and emotional health. They often don’t have a trusted adult they can reach out to. The CDC released a harrowing report on February 13, 2023 noting the severity of the student mental health and safety crisis. Mental health among students overall continues to worsen, with more than 40% of high school students feeling so sad or hopeless that they could not engage in their regular activities for at least two weeks during the previous year. In 2021, 22% of high school students seriously considered attempting suicide, while 18% made a suicide plan during the past year.

To help fight our nation’s youth mental health crisis, Gaggle ReachOut, powered by Amazon Web Services (AWS), provides in-the-moment support from crisis-trained counselors for students experiencing anxiety, depression, bullying, abuse, and suicide ideation. Gaggle ReachOut was built on AWS and utilizes Amazon Connect, an easy-to-use, cost-effective, omnichannel cloud contact center.…Read More

Gaggle and AWS Collaborate to Create Mental Health Hotline that Connects K-12 Students to Trained Crisis Counselors, Anywhere, Anytime

DALLAS, TX – According to the latest research from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 20 percent of teens reported having seriously considered suicide, and nine percent have attempted suicide. U.S. schools are doing their best to support students, but with staffing shortages and additional challenges exacerbated by the widespread disruption in teaching and learning, the education community needs solutions to help with recovery.

Gaggle, the leader in helping K-12 districts manage student safety on school-provided technology, is working with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to address the issue by providing in-the-moment support for students experiencing mental health crises including anxiety, depression, bullying, abuse, and suicide ideation. This effort combines the advantages of Amazon Connect, an easy-to-use, cost-effective, cloud contact center, with Gaggle’s ReachOut, a 24/7 mental health crisis hotline for schools. 

“We’re excited to work with AWS to provide convenient access to our mental health hotline to thousands of students nationwide,” said Jeff Patterson, CEO of Gaggle. “We created ReachOut to provide immediate support to students who not only need to be listened to but also advised by trained coaches who can handle crisis situations, hopefully preventing things from getting worse.” He continued, “At Gaggle, we want to do everything we can to help kids who are struggling. This new hotline is another tool we are offering to do just this.”…Read More

Why student safety tools are essential during a pandemic

Interventions into student safety, prompted by technology used to help school leaders prevent students from harming themselves or others, increased dramatically after COVID-19 landed in the U.S. and caused schools to close physical classrooms.

In its annual Student Safety Report, Gaggle, which uses artificial intelligence and trained safety experts in a student safety solution designed to prevent student suicide, bullying, inappropriate behaviors, school violence, and other harmful situations

According to the report, which analyzes incidents detected using Gaggle’s solution, during the 2019–20 school year, school and district educators were able to save the lives of 927 students.…Read More

New Gaggle White Paper Helps Districts Understand and Support Students Struggling With Mental Health

According to the NEA, at least 10 million students ages 13–18 were suffering from depression, anxiety, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or bipolar disorder before the crisis of the pandemic. Now, with the social isolation and increased stress caused by the novel coronavirus, schools and districts are facing even more extensive student mental health needs. To help educators understand and respond to this deepening crisis, Gaggle has published a new white paper titled “Addressing the Crisis in Student Mental Health: How Districts Can Identify and Support Struggling Students.”

The white paper reveals some of the research citing the rise of anxiety and depression among teens as well as causes of the “mental health tsunami” among teens and young adults. “There is real urgency for early treatment of mental health disorders,” said Gaggle CEO and founder, Jeff Patterson. “Suicide is now the second-leading cause of death among 10- to 19-year-olds in the United States. The Center for Suicide Prevention and Research reports that one in six teens has seriously considered suicide in the past year.”

To help teachers and administrators develop more comprehensive services to support students’ physical and mental health, the white paper shares solutions such as additional student services, more professional help, schoolwide interventions, social and emotional learning, and community-wide conversations. Additionally, the paper discusses how districts use Gaggle’s safety management solution as part of their physical and emotional safety initiatives. It shares four case studies highlighting different ways of accomplishing this goal. The white paper also mentions the new Gaggle Therapy service, which matches students who need mental health support with counselors licensed in their state for weekly teletherapy sessions.…Read More

Gaggle Releases New Cyberbullying eBook for National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month

Cyberbullying is one of the greatest threats to student safety, with nearly 15% of students ages 12–18 having reported being bullied online. October is National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month, and Gaggle has published a Cyberbullying eBook to help administrators, educators, parents, and students understand and react to digital harassment. The new eBook offers a fresh and up-to-date analysis of cyberbullying, with additions on remote learning and updated resources.

Available for free, the comprehensive eBook details the importance of full awareness and involvement from administrators, teachers, and parents in order to protect students online. The eBook includes guidance for dealing with all aspects of cyberbullying, from prevention to identification to discipline. The guide also offers an updated list of cyberbullying resources and websites, so students, parents, teachers, and administrators can do further research and learn new ways to handle incidents of cyberbullying in the future.

“Gaggle is committed to student safety at all levels, and cyberbullying is a huge threat to student safety both in and out of the classroom,” said Gaggle’s CEO and founder, Jeff Patterson. “It’s important for all parties to be informed and prepared in order to protect students from cyberbullying. We hope that this eBook can provide students, parents, and teachers with the information and resources they need to handle digital harassment in a safe and fair way.”…Read More

Gaggle Announces a New Service: Gaggle Therapy

Gaggle is launching a new service: Gaggle Therapy. Gaggle Therapy matches students who need mental health support with counselors licensed in their state for weekly teletherapy sessions.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has created a perfect storm, combining rising rates of depression and anxiety with a lack of resources to address those issues,” said Jeff Patterson, Gaggle’s founder and CEO. “School counseling departments are often understaffed, so school counselors need help with providing immediate or ongoing mental health care to students. That’s why we’ve launched Gaggle Therapy.”

“Therapy can have a number of positive outcomes for students, such as helping them develop effective communication skills, improve interpersonal relationships, and learn conflict resolution skills,” said Dr. Aida Vazin, a therapist with Gaggle Therapy. “Students are full of untapped potential. By addressing their mental health needs early, school districts can nurture that potential and empower students to be successful in school and in life.”…Read More

Gaggle Reports Over 95% of School Districts Renew Their Partnerships

Many districts across the United States are starting the 2020–21 school year using hybrid or fully remote learning, so students’ online safety remains a top priority. That fact, plus Gaggle’s high success in saving student lives (927 in the 2019–20 school year), has resulted in 95% of districts renewing subscriptions to Gaggle’s student safety solution, up from the previous year. In addition, 286 districts across 42 states have implemented services with Gaggle since March.

“The School District of Osceola County utilizes multiple systems to protect its students in an increasingly complex digital world,” said Superintendent Dr. Debra Pace. “Gaggle is one system that the district relies on to monitor the safety of our students’ Microsoft email and OneDrive, and has proven itself on multiple occasions, especially during possible student situations. During the last year, the district was notified of 14 possible student situations, including issues of violence and suicide. Knowing that Gaggle is monitoring the safety of our students is a great comfort.”

For more than 20 years, Gaggle has helped thousands of districts avoid tragedies and save lives while also protecting against district liability. The company helps ensure student safety in digital spaces by providing real-time monitoring of the use of online tools within Google’s G Suite, Microsoft Office 365, Google Hangouts, Microsoft Teams, and the Canvas learning management system for more than 4.5 million students across the United States.…Read More

Linewize and Gaggle Announce Strategic Partnership 

Linewize, a growing education technology company, today announced its partnership with Gaggle as a part of its expanding cyber safety offering. Gaggle is the pioneer in helping K-12 districts manage student safety on school-provided technology.

“We’re thrilled to partner with the Gaggle team,” said Linewize VP, North America, Ross Young. “They dominate the ‘hands-on’ student safety market and have saved countless lives. Together, our technologies will work seamlessly to uncover more valuable data for school districts for an iron-clad cyber safety solution.”

The Linewize solution provides school districts with a web filtering system and classroom management tool equipped with red flag safety alerts, teacher/student screen sharing, and cyber safety education for the community. When Linewize flags a student internet search for terms that may signal potentially dangerous or harmful behavior, an alert will be sent to the Gaggle Safety Team, who will include Linewize alerts in their analysis to determine if the school or district needs to be notified.…Read More

Student Mental Health Resources

Schools may have protocols in place to support students on campus, but with the recent transition to distance learning can leave educators unsure of how to help. Gaggle has put together resources to help students in this time of isolation. With changes to their routine, concerns over COVID-19, and possible scarcity of food and resources, it’s a stressful time to be a student or educator.

Resources provided by Gaggle:

…Read More

12 ways to adopt Google Apps for Education

A new digital resource offers tips to safely use Google Apps for Education

google-appsA new resource from Gaggle and Amplified IT offers technology facilitators 12 tips to help ensure that Google Apps for Education safe for teachers and students to use.

In any implementation, it’s important that school and technology leaders identify benefits and value associated with the implementation.

“Without the right strategies in place, most software and web-based tools–whether free or paid–are under-used in education,” according to the guide.…Read More