Every day our students are bombarded with conflicting messages related to drug use, and they may be confused and unsure who to ask for accurate information. With seven percent of teens reporting abuse of prescription drugs in the past year and 23 percent of 12th graders reporting using marijuana in the past month, it’s crucial to provide them with the facts.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) is holding the third annual “National Drug Facts Week” from January 27 – February 2, 2014, and educators and schools have the opportunity to help shatter the myths about drug use. There are plenty of ways for you to get engaged, including:
- Host a local event in your community
- Participate in local events already organized – lots of schools are engaged as partners (online interactive map is available)
- Distribute the “Drugs: Shatter the Myths” booklet to students
- Encourage your students to take the National Drug IQ Challenge
The Department of Education has created numerous resources to assist schools and colleges, as well as parents, in preventing illicit drug use. We are pleased our federal colleagues at NIDA have created such an array resources for students and schools, and that they provide this annual opportunity for students to chat one on one with NIDA researchers, and to better educate themselves on how drugs can impact their lives.
Find out more online at:
- ED National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments
- ED/DOJ publication Growing Up Drug Free: A Parent’s Guide to Prevention
- NIDA National Drug Facts Week website
Norris Dickard is Healthy Students Group Leader in ED’s Office of Safe and Healthy Students