Skip to main content
The PBS on-demand streaming service, WNED PBS Passport, is available in Canada! Learn More
Student Mental Health Screening & Discussion

Student Mental Health Matters Screening & Discussion | November 1

Join Buffalo Toronto Public Media on Wednesday, November 1 at 5:30pm for screening part of Now Return Us to Normal, a presentation of a new student mental health toolkit, a panel discussion, and dinner!  

Public media stations across New York State are focusing on youth mental health and suicide prevention. Public media is renowned for its thoughtful and thorough approach to public affairs and social issues, and Student Mental Health Matters touches on topics as wide-ranging as adverse childhood experiences, stress and self-harm, suicide prevention, and the role of social media.

About the Documentary

Now Return Us to Normal is a film written and directed by Leslie Koren, produced by Leslie Koren and Laura Heberton. 

SYNOPSIS: With a quiet and contemplative tone, Koren hasn’t made an alarmist expose on a questionable industry but rather focuses on her own journey as she processes the power Oakley once held over her. Participants include her parents, who speak comfortably about their choices once Koren easies their tensions regarding the project. They are not to blame––they simply thought they were making the right choice.....The stories are mostly familiar with some choosing to remain anonymous as they hope to build careers and live their lives following their traumatic experiences. For Koren, the focus is on personal growth as she logs thousands of cross-country miles to investigate the origins of her condition which includes recurring nightmares and anxiety about Oakley. Now Return Us to Normal is a kind of personal, poetic road movie, interested in the journey even if the destination is somewhat unclear.


Now Return Us to Normal | Preview

In this ultimately healing personal essay, a filmmaker and her diverse classmates confront the trauma brought on by their years at a behavior modification boarding school. Pressing ahead to alleviate her crippling PTSD and shame about her time at a behavior modification boarding school, a high-school ice hockey star asks questions for which there most likely will be no answers, attempting to connect the dots of her disjointed memories. She speaks with her parents, former staff, and former classmates - a Latinx dancer; a young professional from NY; a Lakota youth activist; and a lawyer- and have their own varied memories. She questions what kind of youth deserves this treatment, if any. Through this process, like many with PTSD, she wonders if she will ever be a reliable narrator of her own story, and if not, how much does that matter? 

About the Student Mental Health Toolkit:

Student Mental Health Matters: A Toolkit for Educators is designed to equip educators, school staff, and school mental health professionals with critical knowledge and strategies needed to support the mental well-being of their students. Digital media resources — curated from expert mental health organizations and public media sources — cover suicide prevention, stress and anxiety, self-harm, adverse childhood experiences, and social media, and offer:

  • Expert perspectives from mental health professionals, school administrators and educators aimed at helping teachers better understand a topic;
  • Student perspectives that reveal the lived experience of elementary, middle, and high school students;
  • Strategies that provide real-world applications for teachers’ practices.


All resources and accompanying support materials are intended to be used in a professional development setting and may contain material considered sensitive to some viewers.

There will be many related organizations present with resources and information.

Reserve your seat today for this free event. Dinner will be provided.

Student Mental Health Matters Screening & Discussion

Wednesday, November 1


Buffalo Toronto Public Media

140 Lower Terrace 

Downtown Buffalo


Register Now

Free Parking | 140 Lower Terrace

Buffalo Toronto Public Media is conveniently located in downtown Buffalo at 140 Lower Terrace, near the I-190. The entrance to our parking lot is on Charles Street (also known as "Mark Russell Alley").

About the Panel Discussion

Moderator - Karl Shallowhorn is the Director of Youth Programs for Mental Health Advocates of WNY. He is an author, TEDx speaker and hosts Mindful Music on 88.7 FM WBFO . Karl is the Chair of the Board for the Mental Health Association in New York State.


  • Leslie Koren - Filmmaker of Now Return Us to Normal, which focuses on her personal journey of confronting the trauma of being sent away for depression. Leslie is currently a Content Producer with Buffalo Toronto Public Media.
  • Kristi Moscato - Community Relations Manager for Person Centered Services, a care coordination organization for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Kristi is the mother of 2 children, a son Jonah (16), and a daughter Zoey (17). Zoey is dually diagnosed with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges and the reason Kristi is so passionate about her work and supporting families throughout WNY.
  • Anne Marie Pegg - is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, a Crisis Prevention and Response Coordinator for the Buffalo Public Schools, and the owner of Nickel City Counseling. During her 15 years of clinical practice, she has worked with children, adolescents, adults, and families within mental health agencies, correctional facilities, and local school districts. She has specialized training in treating ADHD, anxiety, depression, OCD, mood disorder, stress, parenting issues, and trauma.

Funding for Student Mental Health was provided in part by the New York State Education Department.