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Substance Use and Abuse
Pine Tree Independent School District is committed to providing a safe and healthy learning environment for our students, faculty, and staff. We recognize that the abuse of alcohol and drugs will interfere with a student’s ability to reach his/her full potential. Without a safe and orderly learning environment, teachers cannot teach and students cannot learn.
Pine Tree ISD Substance Abuse Prevention Overview
Our substance abuse prevention efforts use the dissemination of information as well as both group and individual counseling in order to discourage and bring awareness to the harmful consequences of alcohol abuse and drug use. Our School Counselors offer general counseling and referrals to substance abuse treatment agencies in the community to our faculty, staff, and students with alcohol or other drug-related problems. In addition, our prevention efforts include:
Risk vs Protective Factors
Efforts to improve child and adolescent health typically have featured interventions designed to address specific unhealthy behaviors such as tobacco, alcohol, and drug use. However, results from a growing number of studies suggests greater health impact might be achieved by also enhancing protective factors that help children and adolescents avoid multiple behaviors which might put them at high risk of adverse health and educational outcomes
Risk factors are individual or environmental characteristics, conditions, or behaviors which increase the likelihood that a negative outcome will occur. Examples include:
Protective factors are individual or environmental characteristics, conditions, or behaviors which reduce the effects of stressful life events; increase an individual’s ability to avoid risks or hazards; and promote social and emotional competence to thrive in all aspects of life. Examples include:
Resource: Blum, R.W., McNeely, C.A. Rinhart. P.M., (2002). Improving the odds: the untapped power of schools to improve the health of teens. Center for Adolescent Health and Development, University of Minnesota, 200 Oak St. SE, Suite 260, Minneapolis, MN.
The Power of School Connectedness
As mentioned earlier, a major goal of the Pine Tree ISD is to create schools where everyone belongs. The motto of our counseling department is to help every students feel capable, cared for, and connected. School Connectedness is the belief by students that adults and peers in the school care about their learning as well as about them as individuals. Research has demonstrated a strong relationship between school connectedness and educational outcomes. Adolescents who feel connected to school:
As you can see, when we assist a student in feeling “connected” to school, we are increasing a student’s chance of academic success and decreasing the risk of drug abuse, suicidal thoughts, bullying, and other risky behaviors.
Statistics About Student Drug and Alcohol Abuse
In the United States
Source: SAMHSA, Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2013 and 2014.
Alcohol and drug users often try to conceal their symptoms and downplay their problem. If you’re worried that a family member might be abusing drugs, look for the following warning signs:
Psychological Warning Signs
Behavioral signs of drug abuse
Physical warning signs
How Can I Help a Friend Who Might Have a Problem with Drugs or Alcohol?
Students are informed at the beginning of school, as well as periodically during the school year, how to make a report.
What Can Parents Do?
A parent has a major impact on the child’s decision not to use drugs. Believe it or not, most students DO listen to their parents! Here are some ways a parent can help the child make healthy, drug-free choices:
Trust your “gut.” If you suspect drug or alcohol use, talk with your child about your concerns. Contact a substance abuse specialist or your child’s school counselor. The information will remain confidential.
Above the Influence
Foundation for a Drug-Free World
National Institute on Drug Abuse
Partnership for Drug-Free Kids
Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration
U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration
Winning the Fight
Get In Touch
1701 Pine Tree Road | PO Box 5878 | Longview, Texas 75608
Phone: 903-295-5000 | Fax: 903-295-5004
Business Hours: Monday - Friday | 7:30 A.M. - 4:30 P.M.
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