Calgary Catholic schools nix Netflix series about teen suicide, 13 Reasons Why

Catholic schools in Calgary are being asked not to use a controversial Netflix series about teen suicide in the classroom.

In the popular fictional series, 13 Reasons Why, the main character leaves behind audio tapes for the people she blames for driving her to commit suicide.

Some educators and mental health advocates are worried about the potential impact on vulnerable teens.

"It's not something that we would recommend to use in the classroom," said Karen Ryhorchuk, spokesperson for the Calgary Catholic School District.

"However, because it is being so widely talked about, we really do encourage students to have that open communication with people should they feel the content they viewed has been troubling them."

She noted there are counsellors at every junior and senior Catholic school in Calgary.

"We've sent out additional resources that talk about ways to address suicide and suicide prevention with adolescents," said Ryhorchuck.

The Calgary Board of Education also sent a list of mental health resources to staff, but in a statement it said it has not given its teachers any direction on whether to show or discuss the series in class.

Students at St. Vincent elementary school in Edmonton have been ordered not to talk about 13 Reasons Why.

The principal sent an email to parents saying, "the discussion that is unfolding at school is troubling."

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