Study: Student drug use below average
Leada DeVaney, Hartselle Enquirer
A study conducted by Hartselle City Schools shows student use of tobacco, alcohol and drugs slightly less than the national average.
Some 1,200 Hartselle students in grades six- 11 participated in the national Pride Survey. The survey has some 216 questions and polls students on issues such as use of tobacco, alcohol and drugs.
The results show the use of illegal substances to be slightly lower than the national average. Results include:
Copies of the Pride Report are available at Hartselle High, Hartselle Junior High School and the board's Central Office.
While he would prefer none of the students use illegal substances, School Board President Ronnie Abercrombie said he was glad Hartselle's averages were below the national figures.
"We are very proud of our students" Abercrombie said.
Abercrombie also used the results to defend the board's decision to implement system-wide drug testing.
"If we can prevent one student from participating in drugs, it's worth it," he said. "It's a lot cheaper to prevent than to rehabilitate."
The system spends some $30,000 a year on testing students. All students in grades seven -12 who take part in extra-curricular activities, including sports, are subject to drug testing.
According to the Central Office, 867 Hartselle High School students were tested during the last school year with 17 positive results. Of the 17 positives, 11 were for nicotine and six for marijuana. Four-hundred and nineteen students were tested at Hartselle Junior High School. No positive results were reported at HJHS.