Friday, March 23, 2007

Young people engaging in more unhealthy choices

Posted by the Seattle PI.
About 20 percent of 10th- and 12th-graders in Washington schools have been drunk at school in the past year -- up from 15 percent two years ago.
Another question new to the 2006 survey asked if students had been drunk or high within the past 30 days. Saying yes were 22.8 percent of 10th-graders.
The survey found marijuana use by eighth-graders is down, but use among 10th- and 12th-graders has remained stable.

The people who are primarily responsible for addressing and preventing drug and alcohol use in children are the parents. One of the biggest dangers of continually building programs in the school system to address these issues is that it allows the parents to think that these issues are going to be adequately dealt with through the schools. Parents think that they don't have to teach their children about the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse since the school system will do it. This report seems to indicate that despite the increased emphasis that has been placed on drug and alcohol education in the school system, we are loosing ground. The next item on the near horizon is "medically accurate" sex education in the school systems. I expect that we will see much of the same results over time as schools begin to implement programs that move away from abstinence towards contraception alternatives and abortion.

The full report can be obtained here: Healthy Youth Survey

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