More and more students at the Flagstaff Unified School District are saying no to alcohol. In a recent study done that focused on the results of surveys made in the last eight years, teen drinking has been observed to be decreasing in the area.
It was also noted that most students are now informed about the dangers of alcohol, and reports of adolescent drinking have gone down significantly.
The news is very encouraging especially to law enforcement officials and anti-alcohol advocates that are all pushing for the approval of a new program that will replace DARE. One of the provisions of the new program is the assignment of two police officers at the FUSD middle school and high schools.
The direct cause why kids have lessen their interests on alcohol is still not certain, but for Citizens Against Substance Abuse executive director Connie Leto, it could be that more parents are opening their channel of communication to their children. “I think we have more parents that are speaking up to their kids about alcohol.”
According to records of the Flagstaff police, the department tallied 1501 incidents of underage drinking in 2009, but this number decreased by a little less than 50% in 2011 at 894 cases.
Leto added that more students are influenced by their parents’ views on alcohol. When kids know their parents don’t approve of alcohol and warn them of its dangers, they too will avoid the substance and turn away from underage drinking.
The Flagstaff City Council gave their approval to the new program of the police department that will take DARE’s place just last week.
Project Alert will now be the latest initiative from the authorities that will monitor drug and alcohol activities of students. The program will focus on eighth and ninth graders as these levels are found to be the most vulnerable to substance abuse.