With more than 500 guests in attendance at Mission Hills Church on October 15, 2019, Littleton Public Schools and the Kaiser Permanente Arts Team hosted a public presentation of “GHOSTED”, a professional stage play and conversation about the realities, relationships and resilience of today’s teens.
“Ghosted” is a term used when a person, suddenly and without notice, cuts off communication with another. As in, “I thought things were really good between us, but lately he hasn’t responded to any of my texts or calls. I feel like I’ve been ghosted.” To be ghosted is to feel rejected, ignored, alone or cut off from the outside.
The play, designed for students ages 12+, focuses on four students experiencing various challenges in high school and the mental health challenges of anger, isolation and depression that can be present among their peers in that setting. The Kaiser Permanente Arts Team worked with the Seattle Childrens’ Theater to create GHOSTED by using feedback from youth about their experience of high school.
LPS Board of Education member Jim Stephens welcomed the large crowd before the performance, and noted that honest discussions about mental health will lead to improvements. “The time is long past when people should be denying the prevalence of mental health struggles in our students, or stigmatizing those who need to seek help,” Stephens said.
Kaiser Permanente is rolling out the performance of Ghosted to other regions across the country. The roll-out is part of an expansion of Thriving Schools offerings known as Resilience in School Environments, or RISE, aimed at strengthening social and emotional wellness in schools.